Wranglers, Skrastins shine in NAHL season opener

Sep 16, 2021

Blaine, MN-The Amarillo Wranglers began their inaugural season with a 5-to-2 victory over the New Jersey Titans Wednesday night. 

Wranglers forward, Kristaps Skrastins led the offensive attack with four of the five Amarillo goals in the season opener. 

The Titans would break the ice just 5:40 into the game when Brandon Avezov buried the puck in an open net with crisp passing from linemates Nick Ring and Colin Grable. Amarillo would not score in the first frame but would begin the second period on the mad advantage with a late New Jersey penalty. 

On the opening face-off of the second period, Glebs Prohorenkovs picked up the puck and rushed into the Titans zone setting up Skrastins to beat Titans goalie Cam Carroll to even the score just nine seconds in. 

Prohorenkovs would give Amarillo the lead at the halfway mark of the period beating Carroll high on the glove side and net the Wranglers second power-play goal of the period. Skrastins would find the back of the net again just two minutes later after Tommy Chunchukov floated the puck for a re-direction. 

New Jersey would strike late in the second period with a goal from Brendan Dumas on a two-on-one break for the titans. The Wranglers would hold onto a one-goal advantage going into the final period. 

Skrastins would find the net quickly in the third with a setup from linemate Prohorenkovs just four minutes in to regain the two-goal lead for the Wranglers. Later in the period, Skrastins would score his fourth goal on another re-direction from Chunchkov to open up a 5-to-2 lead. 

Wranglers goalie Max Gutjhar would make 27 saves on 29 shots faced to secure the three-goal victory for the Wranglers debut. The Wranglers scored five goals on only 25 shots and would go 2-for-5 on the power play and kill off both penalties they were assessed. 

Amarillo will face the Minnesota Wilderness on Thursday at 5:30 p.m. for their second of four games during the NAHL Showcase.