AMARILLO, TX – Timely goals propelled the Amarillo Bulls to their 32nd win of the season on Friday night at the Budweiser Bull Pen in the Amarillo Civic Center.
Roman Ammirato scored the game winning goal late in the second period to help the Bulls dump the Lone Star Brahmas 3-1. The Bulls maintained their 11 point lead over the second place Topeka RoadRunners in the South Division. The big news on the night was that Amarillo was able to push its overall NAHL advantage to four points after the Fairbanks Ice Dogs were beaten in Corpus Christi.
Brady Ferguson and Mike Davis tallied goals for Amarillo, while goaltender Paul Berrafato stopped 17 of 18 shots he faced. The Bulls used strong team defense in the contest to prevent the Brahmas from getting opportunities in front of the net.
The Amarillo Bulls came out strong in the opening 20 minutes and controlled much of the play. Brendan McGuire had one of the better scoring chances but was denied by Jett Salinas. It was Brady Ferguson who fired an unassisted marker past the goaltender to make it 1-0 at the 15:14 mark. The Bulls outshot the Brahmas 12-4 in the first period.
The visiting Brahmas came back on the Bulls early in the middle stanza. Lone Star pushed a puck across the goal line on a scramble in front of the net to tie the game 1-1. But seven minutes later, the Bulls restored the lead when Roman Ammirato converted a two-on-one from Mike Davis. The play started with a good face-off win by the Bulls inside their own end and they were allowed to push the play up the ice to set up the goal. The Bulls outshot the Brahmas 7-6 in the second.
Goaltender Paul Berrafato was tested in the final 20 minutes and the kept his team in front. He stopped all eight shots he faced with two of his best saves being made off a partial breakaway and then on a follow up rebound. The Brahmas pulled their goaltender in the final 99 seconds looking to get the equalizer and force overtime. The Bulls did a strong job defensively preventing any quality scoring opportunities. Mike Davis scored into an empty net after hard work by Brady Ferguson along the boards to keep the puck inside Lone Star territory. Joe Grabowski earned an assist on the play.
Despite being outshot in the final 20 minutes 8-5, the Bulls were able to maintain the final advantage 24-18. There were five total power plays with the Bulls going 0 for 3 and the Brahmas were 0 for 2.
The Amarillo Bulls and the Lone Star Brahmas close out a two game set tomorrow (Saturday) night at 7 pm at the Budweiser Bull Pen in the Amarillo Civic Center. It’s Back The Badge Night Presented by Crime Stoppers. There will be various vehicles located on the main concourse prior to the game.
Tickets are available at the Bulls Office located at 301 South Polk, Civic Center Box Office and all Panhandle Ticket Outlets including United Supermarkets. For further information on Group Rates, please call the Bulls Office at 806-242-1122.