CORPUS CHRISTI, TX — The Amarillo Bulls let two points slip away from their hands on Saturday night at American Bank Center. Three unanswered goals in the final 9 minutes of the third period sent the Bulls to a 5-4 shootout loss to the Corpus Christi IceRays.
With the shootout loss, Amarillo remained six points up on Topeka for first place in the South Division and unbeaten in the last six games.
The Bulls had a 4-1 lead with nearly half of the third period to be played, and the IceRays chipped away at the deficit, including a marker with their goaltender pulled and then two more in the final two minutes of the third period. Blake Bennett netted all three goals and he added his fourth to secure the win in the shootout.
Cooper Fensterstock gave the Bulls a 1-0 lead early from Trey Bagwell and Nick Anderson. Amarillo outshot the IceRays 15-13 in the first stanza.
The Bulls extended their lead early in the second period when Logan Jenuwine scored on a great shot from Gagik Malakyan and Nick Anderson. Corpus Christi fought back to pull within a goal thanks to Santeri Hartikainen. Each team had 11 shots in the second period.
After a huge penalty kill to open the third period, the Bulls fired back-to-back goals to increase their advantage to 4-1. Ryan Lautenbach scored at the side of the net from Gabriel Seger and Logan Jenuwine. Later, it was Aaron Swanson who tipped home a shot from Cooper Fensterstock. The IceRays started their comeback by pulling their goaltender in the final 10 minutes. The moved paid off as Blake Bennett scored his first of the natural hattrick. His next two goals were scored a minute apart in the last 1:47.
There was nothing decided in overtime and in the shootout Logan Jenuwine was the lone Bulls player to score, while the IceRays tallied twice including Bennett with his fourth of the game to make the comeback complete.
The Amarillo Bulls were outshot by the Corpus Christi IceRays 43-42. Each team had four power plays but failed to connect.
There is one more game left between the two teams and it takes place tomorrow (Sunday) afternoon at 3 pm at American Bank Center. Fans can tune into the action live on 107.1 Nash Icon, www.amarillobulls.com/listen and on PPV with Hockey TV beginning with the Fit Omni Warm Up Show at 2:40 pm. Denis J. Puska has the call to follow.
Hockey returns to the Budweiser Bull Pen in the Amarillo Civic Center on Friday, Dec. 7 and Saturday, Dec. 8 when the Amarillo Bulls host the Lone Star Brahmas at 7 pm. Friday’s game features the arrival of The Grinch as well as the return of the Family-4-Pack and the Bring-A-Bud Pack. Saturday, is the annual Toys For Tots Teddy Bear Toss. Fans are encouraged to bring a new or gently used Teddy Bear or Stuffed Animal to the game and when the Bulls score their first goal then throw the toys onto the ice.
Tickets are available at the Bulls Office located at 301 South Polk, Civic Center Box Office and all Panhandle Ticket locations including United Supermarkets or online at www.panhandletickets.com and www.amarillobulls.com/tickets. For further information on Group Rates, Corporate Marketing Partnerships and much more, please call the Bulls Office at 806-242-1122.