AMARILLO, TX – The stellar play of goaltender Paul Berrafato continued on Friday night at the Budweiser Bull Pen in the Amarillo Civic Center.
Berrafato stopped all 21 shots he faced and two third period goals broke open a close game as the Bulls blanked the Corpus Christi IceRays 3-0. It was Amarillo’s 36th win of the season and 21st on home ice. The Bulls are just one win away from equaling a record set last year of 22, but still two away from the all-time record of 23 set by the 2002-2003 Amarillo Gorillas.
Ryan Cole, Clint Carlisle and Blake Roubos netted the goals for the Bulls, while Berrafato made some timely saves to keep his team in front. Much of his best work was saved for the third period as Corpus Christi came out firing looking to tie the game but couldn’t get that big goal.
“I thought Paul played great even though our offense didn’t click as often as we would have liked,” said Bulls Head Coach Dennis Williams. “Our players bought into the game plan, and to get a shutout at home in front of a nice crowd like that was a good win for our guys.”
The Bulls continue to lead by 10 points over the Topeka RoadRunners for first place in the South. The Texas Tornado remains 13 points back in third. The IceRays saw their lead for the fourth and final playoff spot shaved to five points.
There was no scoring in the first period, but the Bulls had the better of the scoring chances on Hayden Stewart. Amarillo outshot Corpus Christi 11-5.
It was a better second period for the Bulls which scored just 57 seconds into the stanza. Ryan Cole finished off a play with a great shot that beat Stewart. Brady Ferguson and Omar Mullan picked up assists. Seconds later, Cole got the Bulls’ fans and his bench going when he got into a fight with an IceRays’ player. The Bulls outshot Corpus Christi 17-8.
After the IceRays came out strong in the first two minutes of the third period, the Bulls went to work with two goals less than three minutes apart. Clint Carlisle stole the puck off a turnover by an IceRays’ player and made no mistake beating the goaltender to make it 2-0. Shortly after that, Blake Roubos scored on a rebound in front of the net after the Bulls stretched the play up the ice. TJ Sarcona’s centering pass for Omar Mullan was first denied by Stewart until Roubos swept up the rebound in front.
After that the Bulls defense took over and shutdown the IceRays and any comeback attempt they were hoping to make.
The Amarillo Bulls outshot the Corpus Christi IceRays, 39-21 including 11-8 in the third period. There were six total power plays with neither team being able to score.
A four-game home stand closes out for the Amarillo Bulls tomorrow (Saturday) night when they host the Corpus Christi IceRays at 7 pm. It’s Military Appreciation Night, and current as well as former military personnel can get free tickets with a valid ID. Tickets are available at the Bulls Office located at 301 South Polk, Civic Center Box Office and all Panhandle Ticket Outlets including United Supermarkets. For further information on Group Rates, Seven Game Flex packs and more, please call the Bulls Office at 806-242-1122.