Cotton Kings Game Night Preview
3/3/07 - NEW MEXICO SCORPIONS (27-19-6) @ LUBBOCK COTTON KINGS (20-27-6)
- 7:05 PM CITY BANK COLISEUM
BACK TO THE BANK
It has only been a week since the Lubbock Cotton Kings have been away from home, but it seems like a long time, since they have played their last four games on the road. Lubbock closed out a four-game road trip last night with a 6-1 loss at Colorado to split the road trip with a 2-2-0 mark. The Kings are playing the seventh game of an eventual eight games in ten days span. The two teams bookend the Southwest Division, as New Mexico has a five standing point division lead and Lubbock sits in fifth place of the division, 14 points back. Lubbock enters the game four points behind Rio Grande Valley for the final playoff spot in the Southern Conference.
This game is the sixth of eight match-ups on the season between the two teams and just the second here in Lubbock. The Scorps have won all prior contests this season and have a 5-0-0 season series lead, and this match-up will be the 63rd all-time meeting. Bobby Brown (2g,1a) and Troy Neumeier (1g,2a) lead the Kings in the season series with three points, while Lance Herauf (5g,4a) has nine points in the series to lead the Scorps'. Lubbock holds a 28-25-9 all-time record against the Scorps with former King Jan Melichercik leading the all-time series with 16 goals and 33 assists for 49 points, while New Mexico holds the season advantage with a 34-20-8 mark. Former Scorpion Peter Ambroziak leads the series offensively with 59 points (20g,39a).
THE LAST TIME
2/18/07 - Lance Herauf collected a pair of goals, including a goal 23-seconds into the contest, as the New Mexico Scorpions never looked back and defeated the Lubbock Cotton Kings 5-3 at the Santa Ana Star Center.
For the second straight game, the opposing team scored on the first shot of the game. New Mexico's Herauf lit the lamp just 23-seconds into the game on a breakaway, marking the fastest goal to start a game by a Kings opponent this season. Ryan McLeod increased the lead to 2-0 with 5:57 remaining in the period by hammering a drop pass in the right circle past Kings goaltender JF Perras. Just 4:29 later, Craig Macdonald converted on a Scorpions power play chance with a goal to close the first period scoring with the Scorpions leading 3-0.
Teams combined for seven power play opportunities in the second period and each team even had time on 5-on-3 advantages, but neither team was able to capitalize with a power play goal in the period. Lubbock did garner a goal while on 4-on-4 even strength play with 8:32 remaining in the period, as a Troy Neumeier slap shot whistled past the reach of goaltender David Cacciola to cut the Scorpions lead to 3-1.
The Kings continued in the third period to climb back into the game and a goal by Simon Watson on the power play 4:11 into the period cut the deficit to 3-2. Herauf registered his second goal of the game 4:34 later crashing on net and sliding into a rebound, knocking the puck past Perras for a 4-2 lead. Corey Rutt tallied a goal on a wrap-around with 1:41 remaining to put the Kings back within one (4-3), and attempted a late surge with an extra attacker on the ice, but Josh Garbutt's empty net goal with less than six-seconds remaining put the game out of reach.
Cacciola stopped 30 of 33 shots in the win. Perras suffered the loss in net, allowing four goals on 39 shots. Each team had a power play goal, with Lubbock going 1 for 5 and New Mexico going 1 for 7.
Neither team has made any roster transactions today in preparation for tonight's game.
Kings - 46 points, 5th place, 14 points back, Southwest Division.
Scorpions - 60 points, 1st place, Southwest Division.
Kings - Points: 50 Anders Strome, Goals: 27 Anders Strome, Assists: 31 Bobby Brown, Penalty Minutes: 193 Paul McBrien.
Scorpions - Points: 56 Christopher Robertson, Goals: 24 Mike Falk, Assists: 42 Rob Guinn, Penalty Minutes: 183 Kevin Harvey.
Kings - Power play: 13.8% 15th, Penalty killing: 86.6% 2nd.
Scorpions - Power play: 14.9% 12th, Penalty killing: 78.2% 17th.
Kings - JF Perras (14-14-2, 3 SO, 2.98), Kyle Stanton (6-13-4, 1 SO, 3.46).
Scorpions - David Cacciola (16-3-1, 0 SO, 2.59), Scott Reid (6-5-3, 0 SO, 2.77).
Lubbock - Sunday, March 4th 5:05 PM vs. Arizona Sundogs City Bank Coliseum
New Mexico - Thursday, March 8th 7:05 PM at. Lubbock Cotton Kings City Bank Coliseum
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