Last night the Jacks played Shreveport for game two of their weekend series. Odessa was coming off their first shutout of the season. They were also in second place prior to last night’s puck drop. The Mudbugs once again had another large crowd on hand as before the start of their game they had their ring ceremony. Shreveport has never been swept during their home opening weekends dating back to 2016-17 when they entered the NAHL.
In the first period Shreveport got on the board first after Austin Brimmer (1) scored at the halfway point. Odessa was able to record seven shots on Devon Bobak but none got past him. Alex Proctor was between the pipes again for Odessa and stopped 12 shots when the first horn sounded. Evan Orr and Jake Mack got into a fight during the period, and it resulted in Orr being ejected from the game. Certainly, the Mudbugs had a lot to prove as they were looking to try to avoid losing both games on their home opening weekend. As for Odessa the toughness only seemed to pick up as the game progressed.
In the second period Odessa seemed destined to find the back of the net early on. However, a quick turn of events led to Timofei Khokhlachev (1) beating Proctor to put the Mudbugs up 2-0. Although with just about a minute left to go in the period, Chris Duclair (5) somehow put the puck top shelf past the right shoulder of Bobak. Cutting Shreveport’s lead in half. Shots after 40 minutes were in favor of Shreveport, 27-15.
In the final period there was a lot of back and forth between the two South Division teams. There was only one penalty called which was against Proctor for tripping. The Jacks were able to successfully kill the penalty and used that momentum to tie the game. Dayne Hoyord (1) scored with less than eight minutes left in regulation. As time was winding down both teams seemed to be content with taking things into extra hockey. It marked the first time this season that either team would have to see more than 60 minutes of action. They did not have to wait long though as just :15 seconds in, J.R. Perdion (4) received a pass from Conner Couet and blasted the puck from the slot. Giving the Jacks their first sweep of the season. Odessa had only two weekend sweeps all last season. Shreveport outshot Odessa, 36-22. Both teams went 0/3 on the power play.
The last time Odessa swept Shreveport was March 8-9, 2019. The two wins moved the Jacks into to a tie with Amarillo for the top spot in the South Division. Head Coach Scott Deur had this to say about what the sweep meant for his team, “It feels good. I thought we had some resilience especially in the second and third period. I was just glad with how the guys were able to finish the game and get the extra point.” Next weekend the Jacks only play one game which will be on Sunday against the Corpus Christi IceRays. Corpus is in a four-way tie for fourth place. With the IceRays not playing last year this will be the first time the Jacks travel to the American Bank Center since October 12, 2019. Puck drop is set for 7:05 p.m. CDT.