On Saturday the Jacks played the Oklahoma Warriors for the final game of 2022. It also concluded their nine-game homestand. The Jacks were still in search of their first win against the Warriors this season and were also trying to avoid being swept after losing game one, 5-2.
In the opening period, the Jacks were shooting the puck from all areas of the offensive zone. While they put up 16 shots, none could get past Daniel Duris, who was playing in his fifth-straight game. The Warriors only managed to record five shots in the opening period and Greg Orosz stopped them all. He was also playing in his fifth-straight game. Both teams went into the first-period intermission scoreless.
The Jacks were able to score the first goal of the game at the 11:49 mark of the second period. It was scored by Tanyon Bajzer (11) after he received a spectacular pass from Ryan Kelly. The assist extended Kelly’s career-high point streak to eight games. It was the first time that the Jacks had a lead on Oklahoma all season. Almost three minutes later and the Warriors would notch their first of the night and it came from Max Dronen (6). Odessa fed off the hometown crowd and was able to regain the lead in the final two minutes. The goal was scored by William Marshall after he went top shelf for his first of the season. While it appeared, the Jacks were going to go into an intermission with the lead, the Warriors had other ideas. Rylan Brady (11) scored his third of the weekend with 17 seconds remaining before the horn would sound to end the middle frame. Odessa was outshooting Oklahoma, 21-17.
The tightly contested contest continued for the majority of the final period until the Warriors were awarded a powerplay. It was their third of the night and they needed less than 30 seconds to convert on it. Malte Hasselgren (12) fired it past Orosz to give Oklahoma their first lead of the game. The Warriors leading goal came with under four minutes left in regulation. The Jacks kept pressuring the Warriors for the rest of the period and pulled Orosz to send out an extra attacker. Neither team would score though resulting in a 3-2 win for Oklahoma. Improving them to 6-0 against Odessa this season. The Warriors finished with 34 shots and the Jackalopes had 27. Odessa did not have a powerplay all game.
While Odessa left it all out on the ice against the Warriors, they end their homestand with a 5-4 record. All four losses came from Oklahoma. The Jacks now go on break and will start the new year on a seven-game road trip that kicks off in Corpus Christi on Jan. 5-6. Their first home series of 2023 will be on Jan. 27-28 against the New Mexico Ice Wolves.
Photo: Danne Braden