It took a little longer to get the scoring started on Saturday, but once again the Wildcats came away with a shootout victory over the Corpus Christi Ice Rays, this time by a 3-2 score.
A scoreless first period gave way to a busy second, with players trading fists, then goals. Two minutes into the period, Blake Box and Mike Economos squared off in a heavyweight tilt that woke up the crowd and the Wildcats' players as only 20 seconds later, Nick Farmer's wrister trickled past IceRays' goalie Dillon Kelley for a 1-0 lead. Corpus Christi struck back three minutes later with a Perry D'Arrisso shot going in for a 1-1 game. The power plays came alive later in the period as Oliver Janzen scored his first NAHL goal off an excellent setup by Patrick Yudez and Tyler Ledford for another one-goal Wildcat lead. But yet again, the Ice Rays re-tied the game with defenseman Phil Pietroniro's blast from the blue line on the power play for a 2-2 score.
The Wildcats outshot the Ice Rays 10-4 in the third period, but couldn't get the goal they were looking for. Overtime was the opposite-- Corpus Christi had four shots to the Wildcats' one, but still, the game stayed tied.
After a shootout that remained scoreless for nine shooters on Friday, The Wildcats tallied goals quickly on Saturday as Colin Staub and Eliot Grauer scored as the first two Wichita Falls shooters, while Evan Cowley stopped the Ice Rays' first two before Eric Purcell got them on the board. While the Wildcats didn't score again, they didn't need to, as Cowley shut down the next two Ice Rays to seal the 3-2 win.
The Wildcats take on the Texas Tornado down in Frisco on Saturday, September 29. We'll have the game on FastHockey and the Flatcast Networks.
NOTES: The last opening weekend sweep by the Wildcats was in 2010, when they won a pair of shootout decisions by 4-3 and 3-2 scores over Fairbanks and Amarillo, respectively... Cowley was 8 of 9 in shootouts on the weekend and also stopped a penalty shot.