Early today the Ice Wolves had their first and only afternoon game on home ice for the season. It was New Mexico Youth Hockey Day at the Outpost and we had tons of fans in attendance for the game and many stayed after for the first ever post-game skate with the team. There was a ceremonial puck drop with USA Hockey Executive Director, Pat Kelleher. Along with Jaye Talbott, who has worked tirelessly throughout the years to build youth hockey in our community and state.
Things did not start out well for the Ice Wolves as they found themselves down 1-0 nearly three minutes into the opening period. The Brahmas were able to tack on another one towards the end of the first period thanks in part to Cole Beilke who notched his first ever NAHL goal. After the first period was over the Ice Wolves had eight shots whereas the Brahmas had 14. In the middle frame it was Michal Stinil converting on the power play to put his team up 3-0. These two teams met last weekend and there was no love lost as the physical play intensified as the game went on with bodies flying left and right. With just about 12 seconds remaining in the period, Keenan Johnson took a Brahmas player down receiving a double minor for roughing along with a 10-minute misconduct. The Ice Wolves started the final period of regulation down by three and without their captain for at least 14 minutes. After finishing the second period with 22 shots compared to Lone Star’s 27, the Ice Wolves came out for the third firing on all cylinders. They were winning board battles and generating tremendous offensive pressure. They had many scoring chances on Ludvig Persson, who played just two days ago and was pulled after letting in three goals on ten shots. With just shy of five minutes left to go in the game the points leader for the Ice Wolves, Alex Dominique, was able to take the puck away from a Brahma allowing him plenty of room in the right circle to snap a shot far side on Persson. With his second goal of the season, Dominique pulled his team to within a pair. His goal also ended the scoreless drought for the Ice Wolves that was nearly at 180 minutes. Head Coach, Phil Fox, pulled net-minder Josh Graziano in the late stages of regulation in hope to tie the game and force overtime. While the Ice Wolves were able to get more shots on Persson, none found the back of the net. Resulting in the 11th loss for the Ice Wolves (0-10-0-1). They did however record 30 shots and Graziano came up huge stopping 31. The next meeting between these two teams will be a three-game series from November 21st-23rd. All of which will be played at the Outpost Ice Arenas. The Ice Wolves head to Odessa next weekend to face the sixth place Jackalopes.
Following the game fans were able lace up some skates and get the chance to skate with the Ice Wolves. Children of all ages were out on the ice getting autographs and even playing tag with some of the players. There were many kids still learning how to skate that received some tips from Ice Wolves players. It was all smiles during the post-game skate especially during the group photo. There will be many more opportunities to skate with the team throughout the season so make sure you follow us on social media for when we announce it. The Ice Wolves will be home from October 25th– November 23rd (11 games). Make sure to get your tickets in advance and thank you for supporting your New Mexico Ice Wolves.