Amarillo, Tx- The Wranglers put up a combined 12 goals in two games over the visiting Corpus Christi Ice Rays last weekend. The Wranglers used the offense to pick up two big wins as the playoff push began.
Amarillo came into the weekend looking to bounce back after two tough losses against New Mexico, where the Wranglers out-played the visiting Ice Wolves in the low-scoring weekend.
The Wranglers would jump out to a 3-to-0 lead in the game Friday night: getting goals from Jack McDonald, Ben Ivey, and Chase Davis. However, the Ice Rays would respond late in the second period and into the third with four unanswered goals putting the Wranglers in a position looking for a tying goal late in the game. Defenseman Jonathan Barker would step up and score his first goal as a Wrangler at the 16:24 mark of the third period to tie the game and send it to overtime.
Amarillo wasted no time in the extra frame as Roman Zap connected with Pierce Patterson for the game-winning goal just 29 seconds into overtime. The comeback win would be the 15th win for goalie Luca Ganz and give the Wranglers their 22nd win.
Saturday night would be vastly different than the night before as the Wranglers scored early and often. Ronan Walsh would break the ice for Amarillo just 1:21 into the game and kick-start a four-goal opening frame. The four-goal period was the first time Amarillo had scored more than two goals in the opening frame this season.
Pierce Patterson would add a fifth goal for Amarillo in the second period with a power-play goal and open up a 5-to-0 Amarillo lead. Connor McNaughton would score just 1:10 into the third period to give the Wranglers a 6-to-0 lead before the Ice Rays finally found the back of the net later in the period. Rihards Simanovics would collect another power-play goal late and secure the 7-to-1 win for the Wranglers.
Carter Clafton earned his eighth win of the year with a 26-save outing. The Wranglers got scoring from up and down the lineup, including a four-point night from Roman Zap, a three-point night for Pierce Patterson, and a two-goal game for Connor McNaughton.
The Wranglers look to build from the offensive momentum as they travel to El Paso this week in their last two meetings against the Rhinos this year. Amarillo is eight points out of a playoff spot and still has two games against El Paso and four more against Corpus Christi.