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Minot, Amarillo and Corpus Christi win on Thursday

December 30, 2016

South Stars: Steven Ipri (top) helped Amarillo to their third straight win, while Cody Fleckenstein (bottom) helped Corpus Christi sweep Shreveport.

Bismarck 1 @ Minot 4 – Three, 1st period goals were the difference as the Minotauros widened their lead in the Central Division with a 4-1 home win over Bismarck.  Minot jumped out to a 1-0 lead with 11:19 left in the first when newcomer Tosten Mann had a Derek Frentz rebound slide right to him for a 15-foot slap shot that beat Bobcat goalie Camden Haugenoe through traffic for his first career goal. A pair of special teams goals helped the Minotauros blow the game open, as Alex Adams scored on a shorthanded 2-on-2 rush then the Bobcat defense lost track of Jake Dittel, who buried a power play goal with 17 seconds left in the frame to make it 3-0 Minot after one. With 5:25 gone in the second, the Bobcats steadied themselves and got back into the game on Tobias Fladeby’s 15th goal of the year when the Norwegian winger caught Minot netminder Lucas Murray leaning the wrong way on a wrap-around and lifted home a backhander to bring the Cats within 3-1. Minot put the finishing touches on the game with 47 seconds remaining, getting an empty-netter amid a Bobcat power play from Nolan Sawchuk for the contest’s final 4-1 margin. Murray made 22 saves in the win, while Haugenoe made 20 saves in the loss. Boxscore
 
Shreveport 1 @ Corpus Christi 3 - The Corpus Christi IceRays kicked off the second half of the 2016-17 season with a 3-1 win over the Shreveport Mudbugs on Thursday night at the American Bank Center. The IceRays finish the 2016 calendar year with wins in three-straight games and points in five-straight games. Another late-blooming first period led to a tally within the final five minutes of the frame in an odd fashion. At 15:21, IceRays defenseman Cody Fleckenstein took a shot that jumped off a defenseman’s stick and fluttered over the netminder and into the net to take a 1-0 lead. The Mudbugs answered shortly after at 18:12 when forward Gueorgui Feduolov found a loose puck coming from a rush and slotted into the net to tie the game, 1-1. The IceRays took the lead for good in the 3rd period with an early go-ahead goal. Former Mudbug and current IceRays forward Garrett Hallford was fed by forward Jayson DiMizio on a 2-on-1 rush for an open net at the right wing to take a 2-1 lead. From there, the IceRays went into lockdown defensively to preserve the lead. While the Mudbugs held an open net, IceRays forward Brendan Miller slotted the sealer from the center line at 19:39, giving the IceRays the 3-1 victory. IceRays netminder Tomáš Vomá?ka (9-10-2) earned the win, halting 27 of 28 shots, while Mudbugs goaltender John Roberts (7-6-1) picked up the loss, turning away 26 of 28 shots. Boxscore
 
Amarillo 5 @ Odessa 3 - A strong third period effort pushed the Amarillo Bulls win streak to three games on Thursday night here at Ector County Coliseum. Luke Edgerton scored in the first minute of the third period to propel the Bulls past the Odessa Jackalopes 5-3. Nikita Babintsev turned aside 28 of 31 shots he faced to post the win in goal. It was a see-saw affair in the first period as teams traded four goals. The home side raced out to a 1-0 lead thanks to a goal from forward Zac Heintz who capitalized on a turnover and fired a shot past Babintsev. A short time later, George Mika notched a goal when his sharp-angled shot beat Jon Flakne on the short side. Odessa increased its lead back to 2-1 when Matteo Menotti tapped in a puck at the side of the net from Joe Kinsella at the 16:54 mark. The Bulls were not done yet as Steven Ipri converted a rebound in front of the net from Luke Edgerton and Truscott. Amarillo outshot Odessa 16-12 in the first period. All of the scoring the middle stanza was done in the first five minutes of play. Riley Bechard scored on a play near the side of the net. Just over a minute later, Eric Cooley was able to push one home on a rebound from Cole Lussier and Jeff Solow. Luke Edgerton gave the Bulls a quick 4-3 lead to start the third period (30-second mark) from Steven Ipri and Alex Truscott. Edgerton’s shot easily found the back of the net thanks to a great face off win to start the stanza. Down the stretch, the Bulls defensive play tightened up and goaltender Nikita Babintsev came up with some timely saves. Steven Irpi rounded out the scoring with an empty net goal in the final 10 seconds. Boxscore
 
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