CORPUS CHRISTI, TX – For the second straight game, a late third period goal turned out to be the difference for the Amarillo Bulls on Friday night at the American Bank Center.
The Corpus Christi IceRays fired the game winning goal with less than seven minutes remaining and held on to beat the Bulls 3-2. It was the second straight loss for the Bulls, their 10th of the season, and the first in South Texas.
The Bulls trailed 3-2 in the third period and got the equalizer right at the start when TJ Sarcona tipped home a shot, his second of the game, from Derek Hills at 56 seconds. Cody Freeman earned the other assist on the goal.
The two teams battled hard over the remainder of the period, but it would be the IceRays that would get the go ahead marker. The Bulls pulled their goaltender in the final minutes but couldn’t get the equalizer. Goaltender Phoenix Copley was solid in net, turning aside 23 of 25 shots he faced.
It was a better start to the game for the Amarillo Bulls. They had a couple of power play opportunities early in the contest, and it would be TJ Sarcona that gave the Bulls the lead when he buried home a shot from Sean Keane at 7:23.
The IceRays tied the game up with a power play goal just past the midway mark of the stanza. Defenseman Derek Hills was involved in a fight with Jordan Miller, and the Bulls player had the upper hand.
In the second period both teams continued to work hard but it would be the IceRays that would take the lead on a deflection off a player and in behind Szczerba. The Bulls outshot the IceRays 25-20, including 13-8 in the first period. There were a total of five power plays with the Bulls going 0-4 and Corpus Christi was 1 for 1 in their lone attempt.
These two teams will meet again tomorrow (Saturday) night at American Bank Center at a special start time of 7:45 pm. Fans can tune into the live action on ESPN1440 and www.amarillobulls.com fueled by sportsjuice, beginning with the Bulls Warm Up Show Presented By Wayland Baptist University at 7:30 pm. The game is also available on Pay-Per-View courtesy of Fast Hockey and a high speed internet connection is required in order to view the game.