Jacks Drop Heartbreaker in Game 1 of 3

The Odessa Jackalopes hosted the Wichita Falls Wildcats for the first time this season at the Ector County Coliseum. The Jackalopes are 1-2-1 against the Wildcats through the first four games of the season series, all played in Wichita Falls.

The Wildcats opened the scoring when Steven Tillie wristed a shot past Eric Schuch in his first game as a Jackalope on the season. The goal for Tillie was his 10th on the season. Odessa fought back hard as Zach Zech had a shorthanded opportunity.

Zech played the puck high off the glass and raced after it to get to the puck first. He took it on the forehand to the right wing circle, where he flung a shot top post to beat Wildcats goaltender, Evan Moyse, for the tie game. Unfortunately, the butterflies didn’t leave Schuch until after the first period, as Jeff Skinner scored his second on the season for Wichita Falls with under 1 ½ minutes remaining in the period.

The second period was a scoreless one with a couple different scrums brought upon by the play of Seamus Donohue for Wichita Falls. While it was a scoreless 20 minutes, Connor Wood had a penalty shot opportunity with 36 seconds remaining. He deked to the forehand but cut his angle a little too tight, allowing Moyse to get enough of a glove on the puck and turn it away.

Into the third down one goal, Chris Donaldson fed Tyler Pietrowski in front of the net, who knuckled the puck over Moyse to tie the game for two goals. The Jacks were hoping to get another as they had plenty of great opportunities, but Moyse was able to save them all.

In overtime, it was the Wildcats who controlled the first two minutes before Odessa took advantage. A flurry of opportunities came, with none falling into the net. After Jake Levin lost his stick, the Wildcats raced down the other end of the ice, with Ryan Burnett scoring the goal on a good wrist shot past Schuch.

Eric Schuch saved 29 of the 32 shots he faced in the game, but played very well following two goals in the first. Evan Moyse saved 48 of Odessa’s 50 shots, en route to a victory in his first game in three weeks.

The Jacks look to rebound tomorrow night at the Ector County Coliseum. Superheroes will be walking around the arena, as well as cape giveaways to the kids who walk through the door.

Tickets can still be bought at the Jackalopes office, or by calling 432-552-PUCK(7825). Be sure to follow the Jackalopes on Twitter @LetsGoJacks all year long and don’t forget to ‘Like’ the official “Odessa Jackalopes” fan page on Facebook.