AMARILLO, TX – Back to First…
That’s the Amarillo Bulls after they erased an early 1-0 deficit with five consecutive goals to dump the Texas Tornado 5-1 on Friday night at the Budweiser Bull Pen in the Amarillo Civic Center. The victory which was the Bulls 30th of the season, vaulted them back to first place in the South Division one point ahead of the Tornado, and stopped the visitors 10 game winning streak.
TJ Sarcona notched a pair of goals, while Mike Davis, Gage Christianson and Tyler Gernhofer added singles. After letting in the early goal, Paul Berrafato was calm, cool and collected as he posted another win, stopping 18 of 19 shots he faced.
“It took us 10 or 12 minutes to get going,” said Bulls Head Coach Dennis Williams. “I think the few days that we were off the ice made us sluggish and we were not clicking.”
“The guys stuck to the game plan, and we started to cycle and chip pucks. We got to the dirty areas to score goals where the last time we played them we kept to the outside, and we were scared to stand in front.”
Williams said the biggest challenge will be to repeat the performance and do it again on Saturday because he expects the Tornado to come out try to get the split.
The Tornado jumped to the lead in the first five minutes of the hockey game catching the Bulls off guard inside their own end. Amarillo tied the game when Mike Davis was left alone in front of the net and he converted a feed from Dan McNamara and Clint Carlisle at 16:19. Sixty-eight seconds later, TJ Sarcona gave the Bulls the lead when he scored in front of the net from Tyler Gernhofer, and Geoff Fortman. Amarillo outshot Texas 11-7.
After an early flurry for the Tornado to start the second period, the Bulls exerted themselves and opened up a two goal lead. Gage Christianson worked himself out of traffic and fired a shot to the top shelf. Brady Ferguson and Ryan Cole added helpers on the marker that came near the midway mark of the period. Amarillo outshot Texas by an 11-8 margin.
The Bulls dominated the final 20 minutes with 21 shots on goal and two more goals to put the game away. TJ Sarcona scored his second of the on a breakaway from Gernhnofer and Roubos at 8:41. Roubos started the play by working the puck up to Gernhofer who spotted Sarcona open for the breakaway.
In the final six seconds, Gernhofer rounded out the scoring on a shot right off the face off from Matt Sieckhaus.
Special teams which were expected to dominate the contest, were kept quiet. There were nine total power plays with neither team scoring a goal.
The Amarillo Bulls outshot the Texas Tornado 43-19 including 21-4 in the third period.
The two South Division leaders will close out a two game home stand tomorrow (Saturday) night at 7 pm at the Budweiser Bull Pen in the Amarillo Civic Center. Get tickets at the Bulls Office located at 301 South Polk, Civic Center Box Office and all Panhandle Ticket Outlets. For further information on Group Rates, the Budweiser Party Zone, or Birthday Party Packages, please call the Bulls Office at 806-242-1122.