FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Mar. 30, 2012
JACKS CLINCH PLAYOFF SPOT WITH 3-1 WIN
Cornellier tallies twice in tenth Odessa victory in past 12 games.
WICHITA FALLS, TX– In the final meeting between the two teams this season, the Odessa Jackalopes secured a spot in the 2011-12 NAHL playoffs courtesy of a 3-1 win over the Wichita Falls Wildcats Friday at Kay Yeager Coliseum. With the victory, combined with a Corpus Christi loss, Odessa advanced to the postseason in their first campaign as an NAHL team, improved to 27-26-5 overall this season and wrapped up their season-series against Wichita Falls with a 7-0-1 head-to-head record.
Friday’s victory was all about the Jacks’ top line, as Ryan Doucet sparked the scoring at 11:54 of the first period, hammering home a power-play one-timer from linemates Lawrence Cornellier and Jalen Krogman to stake the Jackalopes to a 1-0 lead. After a slight lull to start the second period, Cornellier got in on the scoring, potting his 12th of the season at 9:25 on a feed from Krogman to double the Odessa advantage.
Four minutes later, it was Cornellier striking again, as he poked home a Doucet shot that caromed off the end boards behind the Wichita Falls net and back in front of the Wildcats’ cage. The Jacks entered the third with a 3-0 lead intact, but the only goal in the final frame went to Wichita Falls defenseman Matt Purmal, who stuffed a Damien Lona pass under Odessa netminder Connor Hellebuyck’s outstretched right pad at 2:21 of the period.
All told, the Krogman-Cornellier-Doucet line was responsible for eight total points, with Krogman notching three assists, Doucet a goal and a helper and Cornellier potting a pair of markers and an assist in the Odessa victory.
Hellebuyck was sublime in his league-leading 52nd appearance, stopping 30 of the 31 shots he faced to lift the ‘Lopes into a first-round playoff matchup with NAHL-best Amarillo. In his past three games, the future UMass-Lowell River Hawk has stopped 91 of 93 shots for a remarkable save percentage of 97.8%.
With a playoff spot already wrapped up, the Jacks charge into a meaningless weekend series with the Topeka RoadRunners Saturday and Sunday at the Kansas ExpoCenter in Topeka.
The Odessa Jackalopes celebrate their 15th Anniversary in 2011-12 and drop the puck on their inaugural campaign as a member of the North American Hockey League. Season tickets, mini-plans, and single game tickets are available by calling (432) 552-7825 or by visiting the Jacks online at www.jackalopes.org.
Be sure to follow the Jackalopes on Twitter @LetsGoJacks all season long and don’t forget to ‘Like’ the official “Odessa Jackalopes” fan page on Facebook.
— ODESSA JACKALOPES —