On Saturday the Jacks faced Shreveport to cap off the weekend series. Odessa won game one, 5-4, in a shootout. Giving them a 19-17-0-1 (39pts) record heading into game two. Shreveport was still sitting in fourth with a 20-13-2-4 (46pts) record.
Odessa started out the opening period by scoring the first goal 7:29 into it. The goal came from Tanyon Bajzer (15) after he took a wrist shot from the slot that beat Nikola Goich. The Jacks would add to their lead after Bajzer (16) scored on a breakaway. Odessa took a 2-0 lead into the first-period intermission. However, Shreveport was outshooting them, 9-8.
The Mudbugs came out in period two hungry for goals. They were able to notch three within three minutes of each other. It started 6:20 into the middle frame as Hayden Nichol (8) would beat Greg Orosz shorthanded to mark the first of the night for Shreveport. It was just the second time this season that Odessa has allowed a short-handed tally. As for Shreveport, it was their sixth short-handed goal this year. Logan Gotinsky (12) would tie the game at two only 1:40 after the first Mudbugs goal. Shreveport was not done there as they took their first lead of the weekend after Jake Mack (10) made it three unanswered for Shreveport. Odessa called a timeout and would score shortly after play resumed. The tying goal was scored by Dayne Hoyord (6) to extend his goal streak to four games. The middle frame would end with a 3-3-3 score and the Mudbugs leading in shots 22-15.
The Jacks would regain the lead at the 8:36 mark of the final period. The goal was scored by Ryan Kelly (11). Although Odessa was leading, 4-3, Shreveport continued to fight back and was able to tie the game once again. Ryan Burke (9) scored the tying goal with just over 2:30 remaining in regulation. The horn sounded to end regulation and for the second-straight night, the game would have to go beyond three periods. The Mudbugs were outshooting the Jackalopes, 29-21, going into the overtime. Shreveport had the puck for most of the overtime and it would allow them to score the game-winning goal about two minutes into the extra period. The goal came from Nick Marino (5) to give Shreveport three points on the weekend. Odessa also secured three points but remains eight points out of a playoff spot. Shreveport had 33 shots and Odessa had 22. Both teams went 0/3 on the powerplay.
Odessa is now 4-1-1 against Shreveport this season. It was the first time this year that Odessa lost in overtime. The last five losses for Odessa were all decided by one goal. Head Coach Scott Deur stated this following the 5-4 loss, “I thought we started out the game well again, but they were able to get some bounces their way in the second period. Our response after the timeout was good and after we got the fourth goal all we had to do was finish strong.” Deur went on to add, “We shouldn’t have let them back in the game and now they got points out of it.” Odessa will now go on a seven-game road trip to finish out the month. Their first opponent will be the top team in the league, the Oklahoma Warriors. The Warriors are the only team Odessa has yet to beat this season (0-6).
Photo credit: Danne Braden