Yesterday, Odessa hosted third-place, Wichita Falls. The Warriors entered the game on a four-game point streak (3-0-0-1) and won 10 of their last 12 contests (10-1-0-1). As for the Jacks, they were coming off a split weekend series with the Amarillo Wranglers. Odessa went into game one with a 3-3 record against the Warriors this season. This is just the second season for the Warriors in the NAHL and they are looking to reach the playoffs once again.
Both teams came out of the gate hot in the opening five minutes of the first period. The Warriors captain, Vincent Corcoran (6), score the first goal of the game. Less than a minute later, J.R. Perdion (15) tied it after scoring a power-play goal. However, that would be the only goal the Jacks scored until late in the third period. The Warriors would score two more goals before the horn sounded ending period number one. Their second goal was scored by Max Dronen (4) and their third was scored by Adam Smith (3). The shots were even at 10 apiece through the first 20 minutes of play.
Wichita Falls picked up right where they left off by scoring four goals in the middle period. Their first two goals of the period were scored by Dean Bauchiero (4) and Drew Vieten (12). After their fourth goal, Noah Rupprecht was pulled from the net after allowing four goals on 11 shots. Alex Proctor would replace him for the duration of the game. The Warriors continued to attack the Jacks with their final two goals of the night coming from Philip Tornqvist (14) and William Lawson-Body (11). The Warriors were leading 7-1 after two periods of play and were outshooting the Jacks, 26-20.
Odessa did everything they could to try and get back into the game, but time was not on their side. They managed to add one more goal to their total before the regulation ended. The goal was scored by John Wojciechowski (3) after he sent a wrist shot from the point past Brandon Milberg. The clock expired a few minutes after his goal, giving the Warriors a 7-2 victory. They outshot Odessa, 33-26. The Jacks went 1/7 on the powerplay and the Warriors went 1/8.
The win marked the ninth in a row for Milberg (12GA). The seven goals were the most put up by either team during their season series. Proctor finished the game with 22 saves on 25 shots. The Jacks now have a record of 25-21-1-4 (55PTS). The Warriors remain in third with a record of 27-15-5-3 (62PTS). They have scored at least five goals in each of their last three games. Wichita Falls leads the South in goals with 180. The Jacks wrap up their season series with the Warriors tonight at 7:15 pm CDT. They are now 3-4 against them this season. Odessa is 1-3 in the month of March and only have nine games remaining in the regular season.
Photo credit: Danne Braden