Texas takes over 1st place in the South with win over IceRays
Corpus Christi 1 @ Texas 4 - The Texas Tornado extended their winning streak to three games with a 4-1 victory over the Corpus Christi IceRays on Thursday. Texas got goals from Nick Neville, Leo Lumm, Michael Hoy, and Brandon Hawkins, all of which were scored in the second period. Hunter Leisner stopped 24 of 25 shots that came his way and pushed his record to 12-3-0 on the season. With the win, the Tornado record improves to 14-3-1 and is first in the South division with 29 points.
Shots on goal were 12-6 in favor of the Tornado in the first period, but neither team scored. Once the second period rolled around, the Tornado took over. First it was Neville, who capitalized on a carry-over power-play. With less than a minute gone by in the second period, Neville ripped a wrist shot past IceRays goalie Hayden Stewart to give the Tornado a 1-0 lead.
Later in the period, Lumm drove to the net after intercepting an IceRays pass. As he stickhandled and fell, he poked the puck past Stewart, who had fallen down, and made it a 2-0 lead. A minute and a half later, Jason Eddy sent a centering pass out in front looking for Hawkins. He didn't make contact with the puck, but it slipped to the high slot and a waiting Hoy. His wrister beat Stewart and extended the Tornado lead to three goals.
Still in the second period, Hawkins picked up his league-leading 16th goal of the season. Eddy took the initial shot, Stewart made the save, but kicked the rebound right to Hawkins, who fired it home for the goal. It came with less than two minutes remaining in the second, and the Tornado took their four-goal lead to the dressing room.
When the teams returned to the ice for the third period, Corpus Christi had a new goaltender in net. Ben Myers replaced Stewart and stopped all eight Tornado shots in the third. Meanwhile, the lone goal of the third was scored by Corpus Christi, when Brandon Smith blasted a one-timer past Leisner, the only blemish on his record.