This weekend the Lone Star Brahmas will be in Hidalgo, TX for a three game series against the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees starting on Thursday. With the log jam atop the NAHL South Division and only 17 regular season games left to play, the series against the Killer Bees takes on added importance. Lone Star is currently in second place four points behind Topeka with one game in hand and three points ahead of Wichita Falls having played two more games than the Wildcats. The Brahmas and Killer Bees have played five times this season with Lone Star winning all five outscoring Rio Grande 16 – 5.
11/14/14 – Killer Bees 1 at Brahmas 2
11/15/14 – Killer Bees 2 at Brahmas 3
12/05/14 – Killer Bees 2 at Brahmas 4
12/06/14 – Killer Bees 0 at Brahmas 4
12/29/14 – Brahmas 3 at Killer Bees 0
Last Friday, the Brahmas lost a tough luck shootout to the Corpus Christi Icerays at the American Bank Center. Storm Wahlrab had given Lone Star a lead in the first, but Corpus Christi tied it up in the second before Hayden Hanson re-established the lead. The Icerays pulled even again with just one minute left in the game skating with the extra attacker. Roman Uchyn and Anton Santesson scored for the Brahmas in the shootout, but Corpus Christi had three goals to take the win. TJ Black faced 18 shots in the loss. On Saturday, the Brahmas rebounded for a 5 – 3 win with Uchyn and Oskar Andren both scoring twice to go along with a Ludvig Larsson tally in the second. Jake Kupsky made 23 saves in the win.
Rio Grande is coming off of four games against Amarillo over the past two weeks including a sweep of the Bulls at home last weekend. Game one saw the Killer Bees tie the game at 1 – 1 just over five minutes into the third period on a goal by Dean Balsamo. After a scoreless overtime period, Elliot Lorraine scored the only goal of the shootout in the fourth round to seal the win. Nick Schmit logged the win making 26 saves. In game two on Saturday, the Bulls scored less than 3:30 into the contest before Rio Grande ripped of four unanswered as Ben Johansson made 25 saves for the win. The Killer Bees’ goals came on a hat trick from Dallas Gerads and one from Logan Wendling.
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After another strong showing in Corpus Christi, the Brahmas special teams have continued their slow roll toward the top of the standings. The power play is now 6th in the NAHL at 22.61% scoring 45 times on 199 chances. The penalty kill unit is 3rd in the NAHL at 88.17%. Rio Grande has not seen near the success with the power play ranked 21st at 13.10% and the penalty kill 22nd at 77.35%. Against the Killer Bees, the Brahmas are 4 – 24 on the power play and have held Rio Grande to 1 – 20.
On the road the Brahmas’ power play is coming in at 20.5% on 18 goals in 88 opportunities which have them ranked 5th in the league. They will be skating against a Killer Bees home penalty kill ranked 20th in the league at 77.6% allowing 15 goals on 67 penalty kills. However, Rio Grande has allowed only one power play goal on home ice in their last 23 times shorthanded.
Lone Star’s road penalty kill has allowed 11 goals on 83 kills which ranks 4th in the league at 86.7%. Rio Grande comes into the series with a home power play ranked 11th in the league scoring 11 times in 62 opportunities at 17.7%
Lone Star also holds the advantage on shorthanded goal differential at +5 on the season compared to Rio Grande at a -3.
Goaltending Comparison Last 5 Games
Who is Hot (Last 5 Games)
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