Amarillo, TX – The Jackalopes looked to hold off elimination for one more night, but a questionable overtime call gave the Amarillo Bulls the eventual victory.
Amarillo got on the board first for the third straight game against Odessa in the first period. The last two games against the Jacks, Amarillo went up 2-0, but tonight they were held at 1.
George Mika fired a shot that was saved by Hogue, but the rebound found the tape of Colin Price who netted his second career NAHL goal. Amarillo had the 1-0 lead following the first period.
Odessa would retaliate as power play time expired in the second period. but they would hold the puck and force a tired Amarillo defense to lapse. Ryan MacKellar passed to Noah Poindexter in front of the net as Poindexter flipped it over Amarillo’s goaltender for the tie game.
Early in the third period, Amarillo shoot one on net that Hogue dove out for and was able to save before the Bulls slashed at the glove, dislodging the puck and sliding into the back of the net. That goal would be waved off by the officiating crew, keeping us tied.
A couple minutes later, Odessa’s defense blocked a shot as it fell right in front of Hogue. Unfortunately, a couple players fell right in front to provide traffic where the puck ended up at the top of the crease for Amarillo’s Charlie Singerhouse to push past Hogue for the go-ahead goal at the time.
Odessa wouldn’t let that last as the Jacks put on a passing display. Levi Wunder sped down the half boards before firing a pass across the ice to Jake Levin. Levin would fling one back into the slot for Connor Stuart to pop over Babintsev for the tie game once again.
Both goaltenders shut down their opposition through the rest of the third, forcing an overtime period. 1:45 into overtime, Amarillo had a breakaway opportunity on Hogue. A back-check from Zach Zech lifted Amarillo’s Alex Truscott’s stick before flipping a backhanded shot on net for Hogue to save. Officials saw otherwise and called Zech for a slashing call, allowing Amarillo their 10th power play on the weekend, compared to Odessa’s three.
Amarillo would only need 32 seconds to score as they had the man-advantage. The league’s leading point-man, George Mika, received a pass and fired a one-timer past Hogue for the game-winning goal in overtime.
With this loss, Odessa has now been eliminated from playoff contention, but these players will not back down through the final six games of the season. Pride is on the line as the Jacks have a chance to be over .500 for the first time since joining the NAHL.
Jonny Hogue saved 43 of 46 shots on the night en route to the loss. The Jackalopes will look to rebound and finish off the weekend on a high note tomorrow night as they take on Amarillo at 7:15.
The 2017-2018 Odessa Jackalopes season tickets are on sale now! To reserve your seats, contact the Jackalopes’ ticket office today at 432-552-7825 or log on to www.jackalopes.org for more information.