The Corpus Christi IceRays (10-10-1-2) couldn’t overcome multiple hurdles through the contest in their 5-2 loss to the Amarillo Bulls (7-11-6-0) on Saturday night from the American Bank Center.
The Bulls came out of the gates with a sense of urgency and were rewarded for their efforts at 10:59 of the first period when forward Brendan Walkom tipped a shot in front of the IceRays net on a shot from the right point on the power play to take a 1-0 lead. The IceRays came back less than a minute later at 11:43 to tie the game, 1-1, thanks to a shot by defenseman Cody Fleckenstein in the high slot on a 4-on-2 rush.
Momentum shifted briefly in the home side’s favor early in the second period, and while on a delayed Bulls penalty, IceRays forward Jayson DiMizio jammed home a loose puck in the crease after an initial stop by the Bulls netminder on a 2-on-1 rush to take a 2-1 lead at 5:16. The Bulls came back in succession with two goals separated by just 26 seconds. At 8:20, Bulls forward Jake Nitche re-directed a shot from defenseman Bray Crowder to tie the game, 2-2, then was followed at 8:46 by another shot from Crowder that would sneak by the right pad of the IceRays netminder to jump ahead 3-2.
Despite pressure and a peppering of shots by the IceRays, the Bulls found two insurance goals in the third period to secure their lead. Bulls forward Luke Edgerton knocked home a rebound at 13:45 to double the lead, 4-2, and was followed by a back door jam in on the power play from Bulls forward Kosta Likourezos at 18:33 to seal the game for the road side, 5-2.
Bulls goaltender Nikita Babintsev (6-8-2) earned the win, stopping 40 of 42 shots, while IceRays netminder Camden Burggrabe (4-2-1) was awarded the loss, halting 24 of 29 shots. The IceRays welcome the Wichita Falls Wildcats to the American Bank Center for the first time this season on Saturday, Dec. 3 at 7:05 p.m. on City-County Night. Tickets are available at www.Ticketmaster.com and the American Bank Center Box Office.
Season memberships for the 2016-17 season are still available with full and partial season plans. Reserve yours by contacting the IceRays Front Office at 361-814-PUCK. In addition, stay connected with the IceRays on Facebook (/CorpusChristiIceRays), Twitter (@goicerays), YouTube (IceRays TV), Instagram (CorpusChristiIceRays), Snapchat (@goicerays), and Periscope (@goicerays).