Two goals from Prince, Reuschlein help Tornado to 9-1 rout
It was all Texas Tornado on Friday against the Odessa Jackalopes, who scored seven straight goals to close out a 9-1 rout at Ector County Coliseum. Joakim Jutras stopped 26 of 27 shots in the win, as the rookie goaltender moved to 14-2-3 on the season. Jack Prince and CJ Reuschlein each had two goals, while newcomer Alex Temby chipped in with a goal and two assists.
Reuschlein opened the scoring in the first period with just 4:10 gone by in the opening 20 minutes of play. Temby’s initial shot was stopped by Odessa goaltender Connor Hellebuyck and Ondrej Kopta got a stick on the rebound, but Reusclein was the one who eventually put in the waiting puck. Just 2:30 later, Temby took another wrist shot, but this one found its way through a screen and past Hellebuyck to give the Tornado a 2-0 lead. The goal was Temby’s first of the season after playing in just three games for Fairbanks before being acquired by Texas on December 14th.
The Jackalopes answered at 11:26 of the first with their first goal of the game, and it came on the power-play. Zach Mertes had the puck at the right point and put it towards the net, where it was deflected past Jutras and over the goal line by Ryan Atkinson to cut the Tornado lead in half.
But the Tornado were far from done in the opening period. First, it was Reuschlein who collected his second goal of the game. He had the puck in the high slot, and appeared to send a harmless backhander on goal. Before it got there, however, it deflected off of a Jackalopes defenseman and over Hellebuyck’s left shoulder for the goal. Then, with three minutes left in the period, Prince scored his fourth goal in two games (and his third power-play goal in that time frame) after Nick Neville’s shot was redirected onto his stick. Prince corralled it and put it past Hellebuyck to make it a 4-1 Tornado lead headed into the first intermission.
34 seconds into the middle period, Prince struck again, this time on a wraparound. Marc Biggs dumped the puck around the boards where it was picked up behind the net by Prince. The Tornado captain picked the puck up there and stuffed it underneath the left pad of Hellebuyck, who was removed from the game in favor of backup Justin Davis shortly following the the Tornado’s fifth goal of the game. Though Prince’s goal was the lone marker of the second period, both teams had plenty of chances and both Davis and Jutras did well to keep the score at 5-1 after the second-period horn sounded.
The flood gates re-opened in the third, though, with the Tornado scoring four goals in the third, two of which coming on the power-play. The first power-play goal came from Biggs, who was given credit for a goal on a shot that was taken from the blue line but redirected a couple of times before beating Davis. Just 3:30 later, Jordan Lovick scored on the power-play to make it a 7-1 lead. Later in the third period, Conner Burton and Tyler Rostenkowski both scored within 1:15 of each other to close out the scoring in a 9-1 blowout victory for the Tornado.
Texas and the Jackalopes will be back in action on Saturday, when the two teams play their final game of the 2011 calendar year, a 7:00 faceoff from Ector County Coliseum in Odessa.