AMARILLO, TX — The last time the Jackalopes won in Amarillo was January 11, 2019. Odessa will have to wait a little bit longer to end that streak as the Jackalopes (3-4-0-0) fell to the Amarillo Bulls (2-4-0-1) by a score of 3-0 at the Budweiser Bull Pen on Wednesday.
A slow start for the Jacks put them behind early as the Bulls were able to get a 3-0 lead in the first period. The first goal came off a hustle play below the Jackalopes goal line and resulted in a pass out front to a wide-open Amarillo forward in front. The second goal came less then a minute into Amarillo’s first power play of the night from a shot in the high slot that found it’s way through a screened Connor Hasley.
The third Amarillo goal was a great individual effort by forward Nick Martino who streaked in up the right side wall, then cut into the low slot before firing a low shot past Hasley and into the back of the net.
Despite their slow start in the first period, the Jackalopes responded well in the second period. Odessa was able to kill off back-to-back double minor penalties and had an incredible number of chances in the second period as they laid siege to Amarillo netminder Cal Sandquist. The best chance for Odessa came on a two-on-one break in the second. A great pass found its way to forward Nick Siffringer who just mistimed his shot towards a wide open net.
Another good chance was off a three-on-two rush in the third period. A late pass found a late trailing Fletcher Anderson in the high slot. Anderson send a quick wrist-shot toward the net, but was needed by the pad of Sandquist.
The Jackalopes responded well and continued to play an even game and at points were dominating the play against the Bulls. But still, they were unable to solve Sandquist who ended the night with 31 saves and his first shutout of the season.
Though the Jacks are frustrated with the loss, there were plenty of positives to take forward. First, the Jackalopes penalty kill responded well after giving up a goal on their first outing. Odessa ended the night killing four out of five Amarillo power plays. The response of the Jackalopes in the second and third periods after a slow start was also noticeable and bore similarities to their first game of the season. Had they not faced a hot Amarillo goalie, it stands to reason that the Jacks would have tied or even defeated the Bulls in regulation. Odessa had their chances, it was just a matter of burying them. Furthermore, the Jacks did not lose any ground in the South division race as the they still hold on to 4th place in the very early stages of the 2020-21 campaign.
The Jackalopes will get set to host the Amarillo Bulls again, this time at the Ector County Coliseum, starting on Friday, November 27, at 7:15 pm.
Photo Credit: Danne´ Braden Photography