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Cotton Kings Weekly Notes

December 26, 2006 - Central Hockey League (CHL) - Lubbock Cotton Kings News Release


The Lubbock Cotton Kings have been atop the Southwest Division most of the season, but the recent struggles finally caught up to them as they found themselves out of first place as they woke up Christmas morning. The Kings have struggled with a 2-7-2 record in December and have lost 8 of their last 11 games. The rest of the division has not fared much better except New Mexico, who has not lost a regulation game since November 24th. The combination of inconsistent play around the division and New Mexico's hot play has led to a shakeup that shuffled teams in the standings. Saturday night, the Cotton Kings lost to Amarillo 5-1 and fell from first place to a third place tie with Amarillo in the division. New Mexico and Odessa each leaped into a first place tie, while Arizona fell from second to fifth place. Two standing points still separates first place from fifth place in the Southwest and Lubbock stands just a point out of the top spot (every team in the Southern Conference is at least .500 or better). This week, Lubbock has a full week, hosting Odessa Tuesday and Corpus Christi Friday before returning to the road Friday to face Bossier-Shreveport and completing the week back home to host Odessa Sunday.


One person does not make a team, but that might a hard argument to win if arguing that point to the Kings. On December 1st, Lubbock Cotton Kings defenseman Troy Neumeier went down with an injury, which resulted with Neumeier being placed on the 45-Day Injured Reserve list. The Kings were 9-4-1 heading into that game with Neumeier in the line-up, but since his absence, the Kings have struggled without his defensive play and on-ice leadership with a 2-6-2 record. He has not been the only d-man out of the line-up in December. Stacey Bauman missed four games and Paul McBrien and John Miller have each missed a game during the month (Lubbock is 2-4-0 with Bauman, McBrien and Miller out of the line-up).


The Cotton Kings Autograph Tour presented by Wal-mart and Coca-Cola continues this Thursday. Several members of the Cotton Kings will be at the South Loop 289 Wal-Mart signing autographs Thursday from 5-7PM. Royal Reward Card holders are encouraged to bring their cards to receive points. For additional information, contact the Kings offices at 747-7825.


Back and forth travel has been the Kings way of life recently, but now, for a short period of time, they will be able to settle down at home with a series of home games. Lubbock is set for a middle game of a three-game home stand Tuesday night and will complete the homestand Friday. Lubbock has not played consecutive home games since November 11 and 16th. Lubbock is 4-2-0 in multi-game homestands this season heading into Tuesday.


The recent offensive struggles have really hit the Kings hard. Lubbock had led the Southern Conference in goals per game through the first ten games of the season, but their recent play has knocked their goals per game down to 2.88 goals per game, which is tied for 12th in the CHL and the lowest in the Southwest Division. Lubbock had scored at least four goals in a game eight times through November, but they have not scored four goals in a game in their last ten games (averaging 1.6 goals per game in December). The Kings are 11-1-1 this season when tallying at least three goals in a game.


Each week a member of the Cotton Kings is selected as the "Wienerschnitzel Top Dog of the Week" for their performance in the previous week's games, and this week's recipient for their effort last week is forward Mike Carter. The Cambridge, Ontario native led all Kings scorers during the week with a goal and an assist for two points. He produced the two points in Lubbock's 6-2 loss at New Mexico on Friday. Carter ranks second on the squad in points for December with 5 (2g,3a), and he leads the Kings overall this season with a +3 plus/minus.


6 - Major Penalties - Friday night's contest at New Mexico contained six fights, with five in the third period alone, to produce a season high in major penalties with 6..

14 - Goals - Lubbock's Simon Watson continues to lead all rookies with 14 goals this season.

3 - Assists - Cotton Kings goaltender J.F. Perras grabbed his third assist of the season Friday and leads all CHL goaltenders in points. He is one point shy of the team's single-season record for points by a goaltender (Mike Brusseau 02/03).


Dec. 22 @ New Mexico L 2-6 Top Star: NMX - Mike Falk (2G,1A, 3pts.)

Dec. 23 vs. Amarillo L 1-5 Top Star: AMA - Bill Vandermeer (5 assists)


PRACTICE SCHEDULE: Wed - Thur: 9 - 11AM, Fri: 10-11 AM

Tue. Dec. 26 7:05 pm vs. Odessa Jackalopes


Notes: The Odessa Jackalopes and Lubbock Cotton Kings face off for just the second time in Lubbock this season and for the 75th meeting all-time. Odessa, who owns the all-time regular season series with a 49-20-5 record, is 3-0-1 this season against the Kings. Lubbock is 25-44-5 all-time against Odessa and former King Jan Melichercik is the Kings all-time leader against the Jacks with 43 points (16g, 27a). Lubbock's Bobby Brown (2g,3a), Kyle Nosan (1g,4a) and Trevor Weisgerber (2g,3a) each lead the Kings in this season's series with five points, while Mike Rutter (2g,7a) and Steve Shrum (4g,5a) each lead the Jackalopes this season against Lubbock with nine points.

Fri. Dec. 29 7:05 pm vs. Corpus Christi Rayz


Notes: The Cotton Kings host the Corpus Christi Rayz for the first of two visits to the Hub City for the Rayz and the second overall meeting of the season. It will be the 19th all-time meeting and the Rayz lead the season series 1-0-0 (Lubbock is 0-0-1 in the series this season) after a 3-2 shootout win over Lubbock on December 15th. The all-time series is led by Lubbock with a dominate 14-2-2 record against Corpus Christi's 4-11-3 mark in the series. Former Kings forward Jan Melichercik leads the all-time series with 15 points (5g,10a), while the Rayz all-time series leader is former Corpus Christi member Geoff Bumstead, who had 6 assists.

Sat. Dec. 30 7:05 pm @ Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs


Notes: The Lubbock Cotton Kings wouldn't have a week complete without boarding the "iron lung" and this week's lone road trip is a venture to Bossier City, Louisiana to face the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs. The meeting is the second of two in Bossier City and the third and final meeting of the season. The series is even this season at 1-1-0. Lubbock's all-time record against the Mudbugs in regular season play is 5-8-0. This season's offensive leader in the series is Lubbock's Mike Carter, who has 3 assists. The 'Bugs are led this season in the series by Dan Wildfong's 2 assists. Chad Spurr of the Mudbugs is the series all-time leading scorer with 11 points off 3 goals and 8 assists, while the Kings are led by former King Jan Melichercik, who had a goal and 7 assists for 8 points.

Sun. Dec. 31 5:05 pm vs. Odessa Jackalopes


Notes: The Cotton Kings close out the weekend and the calendar year with a tilt against the Odessa Jackalopes for the sixth meeting of the season between the two teams and the 76th meeting all-time. Note the special 5:05 PM face-off.

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