AMARILLO, TX – The Amarillo Bulls look to continue their excellent play on home ice tonight when they host the Wichita Falls Wildcats at 7 pm at The Bull Pen in the Amarillo Civic Center. It’s the only game on the North American Hockey League schedule.
One of the promotions that is highlighting the contest is a special tribute to the rich history of hockey in the Texas Panhandle with Amarillo Hockey Legacy Night. Former Amarillo Wranglers, Rattlers and Gorillas players will be honored prior to the game and will take part in a special event during the first intermission. Those set to be at the game tonight include John Severyn, David Rattray, Darren McLean, Todd St. Louis, Jason Chafe, Jamie Vandespyker and Austin Sutter.
Fans can also enjoy $1 hotdogs throughout the game that will be available at all concessions stands through the arena.
On the ice, the Bulls will use one of their many games in hand on the rest of the division. They look to pick up their fourth win against the Wildcats this season and pull to within one point of first place Texas Tornado in the South Division.
Tickets for tonight’s game are available at all Panhandle Ticket Outlets including United Supermarkets, Civic Center Box Office or online at www.amarillobulls.com. For further information on group tickets, flex packs or to purchase single game tickets please call The Bulls Office at 806-242-1122.
BROADCAST INFORMATION:Fans can listen to the game live on ESPN1440 and www.amarillobulls.comfueled by Sportsjuice beginning with The Bulls Warm Up Show Presented By Wayland Baptist Unversity at 6:45 pm. Denis J. Puska has the call at 7 pm.
THE SERIES:This is the sixth meeting of the season between the Amarillo Bulls and the Wichita Falls Wildcats. The Bulls own the series lead 3-2 and two of the three wins have come on home ice. Cody Freeman, Ricky DeRosa each have five goals, while Joe Kozlak, and Zack Smoot join them with five points each. Nikifor Szczerba has two wins versus the Wildcats. Wichita Falls Defensemen Chris Leone, and Keil Zornow along with forwards Drew Allen and Tanner Fahlstedt all have four points. Five players each have two goals. Goaltenders Eric Garavagilia and Tyler Green each have a win. Green has three losses.
ALL EYES ON AMARILLO TONIGHT: It is a rarity of sorts as the entire North American Hockey League will be focused on the Texas Panhandle tonight. The Amarillo Bulls-Wichita Falls Wildcats game is the lone one on the slate in the League. There are two games tomorrow night, while most of the teams will see action on New Years weekend.
WINNING NUMBERS:The Amarillo Bulls’ 19 wins are tied for third most in the North American Hockey League along with three other teams. The St. Louis Bandits lead the way with 23, while the Motor City Metal Jackets have 20. Meantime, the Bulls’ are tied for third with 11 home wins trailing the Bandits and the Metal Jackets.
WICHITA FALLS STATS AND SUCH:It has been a tough time of late for the Wichita Falls Wildcats which are 3-6-1 in their last 10 games. The Wildcats are coming off a split in Corpus Christi in their most recent action prior to Christmas. Wichita Falls is now one game below .500 at 11-12-3 versus South Division opponents this season. The Wildcats special teams have been solid on the road, but have not been up to par on home ice. Wichita Falls have fired 25 power play goals on the road this season and rank second in that category, while on home ice the team is near the bottom.
BULLS BITES:It is interesting to note, that the Bulls have outscored their opponents 70-35 in the first and third periods this season, but have been outscored 34-29 in the middle stanzas. Dennis Williams’ charges are a combined 8-0-0 when they lead after 20 and 40 minutes of hockey at home. There are just two games remaining in the month of December for the Amarillo Bulls who are 4-0-1 thus far. Cody Freeman leads the team with four goals and three assists for seven points. All but five skaters have earned at least one point during the month. Goaltenders Nikifor Szczerba and Steve Bolton each have two wins.
UPCOMING SCHEDULES:The Amarillo Bulls celebrate New Years in Topeka with back-to-back games against the surging RoadRunners. The two teams will play on New Years Eve at Kansas Expo Center at 6 pm and then on New Years Night at 7 pm. The Wichita Falls Wildcats celebrate New Years Eve in Frisco when they face the Texas Tornado, but have January 1stoff.