Lone Star Brahmas Come Up Short In Season Opener


The Lone Star Brahmas opened their season at the NAHL Showcase Tournament and got out of the gate early when Johan Steen picked up a loose puck inside the defensive zone and skated it down the left wing. As he crossed the blueline, he used the Magician’s Paul O’Connor as screen and wristed it over the right shoulder of Vaughn Ahrens for a one goal lead at 5:30. Pat Egan was credited with the assist on the play.

The Brahmas were the victim of a bouncing puck that eluded the defense as it came off the near halfwall. Matt Colford found the puck in the circle to TJ Black’s right and hit Nathan Krusko cruising down the slot. His shot back across the grain found it’s way over Black’s right pad. Time of the goal was 11:19. Minnesota had a golden opportunity to take the lead with 6:42 to go as Kelly O’Brein controlled a loose puck just off the right post and fired it on net. Black made the big point blank save to keep it tied at one.

It took the Brahmas just 23 seconds to capitalize on the big save. Caleb Thompson hit Nick Ford with a cross ice breakout pass. Ford carried the puck to the right wing circle then fed it back to Anton Santesson high between the circles and he ripped it stick side past Ahrens.

With time winding down and the Brahmas holding a one goal lead the Magicians came on a last gasp rush up the ice. Austin Jackson found Denis Shevryn skating in front of the Brahmas bench and he fired a shot of Bud Madej’s shin pads. Unfortunately the puck bounced right back on Shevryn’s tape and his second effort found it’s way past the defenseman and behind a screened Black with just 4.1 seconds left in the opening period. It appeared that the Lone Star netminder never saw the puck until it was past him.

The only scoring of the second period came at 11:27 of the period on a faceoff to Black’s right. After the puck was dropped it pinballed off several players until Shevryn settled it on the dot. He sent a wrister on net that Black was unable to get a blocker on for their first lead of the game.

Lone Star controlled the third period out shooting the Magicians 12 – 3 in the final stanza, but were unable to find the back of the net as Ahrens stole one for Minnesota. Lone Star’s best opportunity came with just over 2:30 left when Santesson missed tying things up by a hair. His shot from the point had Ahrend beat, but rang off the left post.

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The Brahmas out shot the Magicians 29 – 16 on the night and both teams were 0 – 3 on the power play.

The Brahmas will next face the Kenai River Brown Bears who lost 5 – 2 to the Corpus Christi Icerays. Game time is 5:00pm on Thursday afternoon.


Elsewhere around the South Division

Minnesota Wilderness – Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees

After a scoreless first period, the Wilderness scored three in the second and three in the third to grab a 6 – 0 win. Former Texas Tornado forward Brett Heikkila opened the scoring for Minnesota before Tyler Cline reeled off the next three with two coming with the man advantage. Ryan Anderson stopped all 15 shots he faced for the shutout.

Wenatchee Wild – Amarillo Bulls

The Wild carried a one goal lead into the first intermission, but Amarillo scored five of the next six to take a 5 – 2 win. Joey DiBenedetto led the Bulls with 2G – 1A while Cody Gylling pitched in 1G – 1A. Jacob Weatherly made 34 saves for the W.

Coulee Region Chill – Odessa Jackalopes

An offensive display from Adam Lovick with 2G – 3A led the Chill past Odessa 5 – 2. Lovick had help from Sean Lang and Richard Zehnal who each had three points on the night. Adam Carlson’s 32 saves was more than enough for the win.

Kenai River Brown Bears – Corpus Christi Icerays

Anthony Cortese had a hat trick for Corpus Christi and Nathan Byer had a pair of third period goals as the Icerays beat the Brown Bears 5 – 2. Kelly Connor added three assists while Andrew Lindgren picked up the win allowing two goals on 23 shots faced.

Fairbanks Icedogs – Wichita Falls Wildcats

The Wildcats entered the third period of the contest trailing 5 – 3, but Evan Okeley scored twice in the period to pull Wichita Falls even sending the game into overtime. Alex Falconer found the back of the net at 2:28 of the extra period to give the Wildcats the win over the defending Robertson Cup Champion Icedogs. David Zevnik logged the win stopping all 14 shots he faced after replacing Chase Munroe to start the third. Munroe allowed all five of the Icedog’s tallies on 24 shots.

Keystone Ice Miners – Topeka Roadrunners

The Roadrunners won a hard fought battle against Keystone by virtue of a Will Scherer shotout goal as the 12th shooter for Topeka. Drew Vogler and Alex Blankenburg stood on their heads in the shootout with Vogler stopping all 12 shots he faced and Blankenburg giving up just the one goal to Scherer. Final score in the game was 3 – 2.