NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, TX – With their final off weekend of the regular season in the rear-view mirror, it’s back to action this weekend for the Brahmas as they host the Odessa Jackalopes at NYTEX.
THE OPPOSITION: The Jacks are currently in the heat of a battle with the Corpus Christi IceRays for the fourth and final playoff spot in the south division. Last weekend the two went head to head at the Ector County Coliseum and the ‘Rays took both games from the home side, thus leaving the Jacks in a worsened position with just a dozen games left. This means that the Jacks will come to North Richland Hills hungry, knowing the importance of every possible point.
Two men who Odessa will rely upon for scoring this weekend are their top dogs, Derek Brown and Hampus Sjodahl. Brown, commited to Niagara University is currently riding a superb 16 game streak point streak and has 10 points in eight games against the Brahmas this year. Not far behind him, Sjodahl, a Bemidji State commit, has 53 points in 48 games this season, nine against the Brahmas, and has points in his last ten contests.
Goaltending is the question mark for Odessa though, as both Dean Shatzer and Jon Flakne were pulled in their games last weekend against the ‘Rays. Since coming over from Minot, Flakne has been the hotter hand in the head-to-head matchup, winning both of his starts. Brahmas fans can expect to see him this weekend for at least one of the games.
THE BRAHMAS: Prior to the off weekend the team mowed through the Topeka RoadRunners in their first trip to town, a big statement against the team they will likely face in the first round of playoffs. Now though, it’s back to a team has been a more frequent visitor to NYTEX, in the Jacks.
While the Brahmas hold a lead in the season series (5-3), the last battle between the two favored the visitors by a decisive 5-2 score. In order to be successful, three goals appears to be the magic number. Each time the team has scored three this season against the Jacks, they’ve victorious.
This weekend’s series will be the first game action for Cam Clarke since receiving Defensemen of the Month honors for the second time this season. The Ferris State commit leads the team in points by defensemen against Odessa this year, so pay special attention when the puck is on the tape of #15.
PUCK DROP: Both Friday and Saturday’s games begin at 7:30. Friday is the final Acme Brick Poster Night so be sure to arrive early to find out who the selected player is and to claim yours! Saturday is Throwback Night, so be prepared to take a step into the past!