(Photo: Troy Young)
WICHITA FALLS, Texas – Behind goals from six different skaters, the Wichita Falls Wildcats (17-10-3) rolled past the Lone Star Brahmas, 6-2, at the Kay Yeager Coliseum on Wednesday.
Jake Townsend turned in a season-high three-point effort, Tyler Ledford had a goal and an assist, and Colin Staub, Josh Haverstrom, Will Vosejpka and Kyle Bauman all found the back of the net for Wichita Falls. Chase Munroe started in goal, making 20 saves on 22 shots to claim his eighth win of the season.
The Wildcats opened the scoring on the power play after killing off a penalty of their own. Sam Piazza and Ledford played catch along the blue line, drawing the defense towards them and opening a passing lane to find Townsend. Piazza then sent an inch-perfect feed to Townsend, who slapped home a shot from the right circle to make it 1-0 on his fourth marker of the year.
With time winding down in the period, Wichita Falls doubled its advantage. After a Brahmas turnover in their own zone, Max Reisinger grabbed the loose puck and started a partial two-on-one break. He fed a cross-ice pass to Staub, who slammed his effort into the roof of the net to make it 2-0 at the 18:57 mark.
The Wildcats continued the scoring in the middle frame, picking up a pair of goals in the first half of the second period. First, it was Josh Haverstrom finding twine out of a netmouth scramble for his seventh goal of the campaign. Then, Vosejpka picked up his team-leading 10th tally of the year, as he sniped a wrister top-shelf to make it 4-0. Ben Kucera and Nick Farmer were credited with the assists on the goal, which came at the 9:11 mark of the second stanza.
The Brahmas spoiled Chase Munroe’s shutout bid as the period wound down, finding the back of the cage off a rush to close the gap to 4-1. Conner Enciso lead the charge into the zone and rifled a pass to Kellen Wasell crashing the net, who redirected the puck past Munroe.
Lone Star cut the deficit to two at the start of the third period, as Liam Stirtzinger found some open space and beat Munroe from in close, but that was as close as the Brahmas would get.
Kyle Bauman restored the Wildcats’ three-goal cushion a few minutes later, sweeping home a rebound into an empty net after Townsend’s effort pulled the Brahmas netminder out of position. The goal, which came at 4:43 of the third period, was Bauman’s eighth of the season.
Wichita Falls would seal the deal with 17:20 remaining when, with Lone Star on a power play and the goalie pulled for an extra attacker, Ledford sailed the puck into the vacated cage from 190 feet away.
The Wildcats are back in action on Friday when they take on the Corpus Christi IceRays in game one of a weekend set in Corpus Christi. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. Fans can follow all the action on FASThockey.com, with an audio-only broadcast available via Ustream.com.
Wichita Falls – Jake Townsend (power play) (Sam Piazza, Tyler Ledford) 8:09
Wichita Falls – Colin Staub (Max Reisinger) 18:57
Wichita Falls – Josh Haverstrom (Jake Townsend) 5:22
Wichita Falls – Will Vosejpka (Ben Kucera, Nick Farmer) 9:11
Lone Star – Kellen Wasell (Conner Enciso) 17:53
Lone Star – Liam Stirtzinger (Nick Blase, Ryan Watson) 1:52
Wichita Falls – Kyle Bauman (Jake Townsend) 4:43
Wichita Falls – Tyler Ledford (shorthanded) (empty net) (unassisted) 17:20