CORPUS CHRISTI, TX – Matt Sieckhaus netted the game winner in the final three minutes of regulation to lift the Amarillo Bulls past the Corpus Christi IceRays 5-4 on Sunday afternoon at American Bank Center.
It was the Bulls second straight victory, and first sweep of the season against the IceRays. Amarillo won its 44th of the season and 20th on the road, and still have two games remaining in the regular season, with an opportunity to post the exact same record as a year ago.
Mike Davis, Omar Mullan, Tyler Gernhofer and Tyler Rostenkowski had the other Bulls’ goals. Paul Berrafato came on to relieve starter Collin Delia to begin the third period and posted the win in goal.
It was a tight checking opening 20 minutes but the Bulls asserted themselves in the final six minutes with several good scoring opportunities but were denied by Ben Myers. The best scoring chance for the IceRays was at the end of the period on a partial breakaway that was stopped by goaltender Collin Delia.
The second period was a wild one where the teams traded eight goals between them. The first five of them were netted in a span of seven minutes. After the IceRays tallied first, the Bulls pulled even when Mike Davis scored from TJ Sherman and Matt Sieckhaus on a deflection in front of the net. The Bulls fell behind 2-1 but then rattled off the next two goals. Tyler Rostenkowski scored off a great pass from Hampus Gustafsson and Omar Mullan. Then Mullan tallied one shorthanded, from Matt Sieckhaus.
The IceRays tied the game four minutes later 3-3, only to see Amarillo make it 4-3 on a power play marker from Tyler Gernhofer, who tipped home a shot from Geoff Fortman and Tyler Rostenkowski. In the dying seconds, Corpus Christi tied the game on a tip in front of the net.
The third period featured plenty of action with the Bulls outshooting the IceRays 12-6. Sieckhaus scored the winner when he roofed a shot after great work in the offensive zone by his linemates Omar Mullan and Mike Davis.
The IceRays took a costly too-many-men on the ice penalty in the final two and half minutes, and the Bulls were able to control the puck inside the offensive zone for most of it.
The Amarillo Bulls outshot the Corpus Christi IceRays 42-26. There were 11 total power plays with each team scoring once.
There are just two games remaining in the regular season for the Amarillo Bulls and they take place on Friday and Saturday at Dr. Pepper Arena in Frisco against the Texas Tornado. The face-off for both games is set for 7:30 pm.
Hockey is back at the Budweiser Bull Pen in the Amarillo Civic Center on Friday, Apr. 5 and Saturday, Apr. 6 when the Bulls host the first two games of the South Division Semi-Final Series. Depending on the outcome of the games, the Bulls will either face the Corpus Christi IceRays or the Wichita Falls Wildcats. Playoff Ticket Packages are now on sale at the Bulls Hockey Office located at 301 South Polk in the Amarillo Building, Suite 101. Prices start as low as, silver section $40, red section $52 glass tickets $60 and pit section $68 while children 12 and under are just $28. The package comes with a total of four tickets and should a fifth game be necessary in either of the series fans that purchased the package can get that ticket at a discounted rate. Call the Bulls Office at 806-242-1122.