Thursday, December 29, 2005

12-29 BUGS vs. OKLAHOMA CITY (SOL, 4-3)

Blazers Win 4-3 In Shootout

Here are the results of the shootout.

Oklahoma City:
Mike Lukajic - Blazing wrister glove side - Goal
Jared Dumba - Came from the left with a backhand - No Goal
Garrett Prosofsky - Stick side backhand - No Goal
Kahlil Thomas - Five hole wrist shot - No Goal
Michel Beausoleil (Oh no, not him) - Tried to sneak one in low stick side - No Goal
Marty Standish - Five Hole - No Goal
Ryan Johnston - a wrister glove side that seemed to fool Carroll - No Goal
Tim Earl - Glove Side wrister that handcuffed Carroll - Winning Goal

Mudbugs
Jason Basile - Slap Shot five hole - No Goal
Ryan Manitowich - Tried to go backhand, poked away by Connors - No Goal
Chad Spurr - Same move as Manitowich - No Goal
Chris Brassard - Same move as Manitowich - No Goal
Dan (Birthday guy) Wildfong - Five hole - Birthday Goal
Jason Campbell - High shot glove side - No goal
Brett Smith - Forehand stick side - No Goal
Blair Manning - 5 hole blocked by the pads - No Goal

On that note I am out.

Everyone have a very safe and joyous New Year. We'll be back with you on the 3rd when the Mudbugs host the Youngstown Steelhounds.

TIME - 10:09 PM

Overtime In The Swamp

The shots are 49-32 in favor of the Mudbugs but the only numbers that matter are the scores and we are tied 3-3 going into overtime.

TIME - 9:50m PM

Brett Smith Gets The Hat Trick

The Gordie Howe hat trick that is (fight, goal and assist in the same game). Smith scored his 14th goal earlier in the period and added his 7th assist in the second. With 10:57 left in the third, Smith put a beating on Marty Standish, the resident tough guy for Oklahoma City (now that Tyler Fleck is sitting at home for the next ten games thinking about what he did to Travis Clayton).

Earlier in the year Smith's father bought him a big screen TV for his first professional hat trick, maybe his pop can chip in with an X-Box 360 for this one.

TIME - 9:34 PM



Mudbugs Take The Lead

Brett Smith adds to his bid for an All Star birth with his 14th goal of the season off of assists by Blair Manning and Chris Brassard to put the Bugs up by one with 17:59 to play. The goal was a power play tally so the Mudbug power play percentage will stop dropping faster than Nicole Richie's fifteen minutes in the spotlight.

Things are getting testy on the ice in the third as Michel Beausoleil just took a two minute minor for high sticking with 12:18 left in the period. Just to make my life hell by having to spell his last name over and over again, Beausoleil puts one top shelf stick side from just inside the blue line to tie the game at three. He had been out of the sin bin a total of 12 seconds to tally his 10th goal of the season. Hopefully I won't have to write his name any more tonight. (Enter crossed fingers instant messenger icon here please).



TIME - 9:25 PM


Second Period Recap

Mudbug Captain and birthday boy Dan Wildfong got into a bit of a tussle with Blazer defenseman kahili Thomas near the end of the second period. The only shots landed were by Wildfong so I guess the victory goes to him even though none of the shots did any damage

The Mudbugs lead the Blazers in shots 34-16 and both teams are 0-4 on the powerplay. How does this play out in the third period? If previous stats are any indication, the Mudbugs are 1-0-0 when tied after two periods at home while the Blazers are 1-0-0 when tied after two periods on the road so something has to give. Overall the Mudbugs are 2-2-0 when tied after two. The Mudbugs have outscored their opponents by 11 goals in the third frame whereas the Blazers have outscored their opponents by 9 goals. I guess those stats don't help us much at all. Stay tuned.

TIME - 9:11 PM



Jeremy Downs Scores His First Professional Goal

Downs, the rookie from Newfield, New York by way of Cornell University scores his first professional goal off of a redirected shot from Brett Smith that went off of his lower leg and into the goal (that might be the worst sentence ever written, I am sure my father, a former English teacher will help me with it if Mr. Rajan does not do so first). Blair Manning received the other helper on the goal that tied the game at 2-2. So far tonight half of Mudbug blue liners have scored which does not bode well for this blogger who would really like to go to Sonic after the game for a Cherry Limeade that is awarded to all fans in attendance when the Mudbugs score five goals.

I guess while I am wishing for things I might as well wish for a pony.

I wonder how Roy's visit with Steve Spurrier is going so far? Roy, get me an autograph that says "Thanks for the memories Montana, go Cocks. Love, Head Ball Coach". Thanks buddy.

TIME - 8:40 PM
First Period Recap

Shane Palahicky was back on the ice at the end of the period so that is good news for the Mudbugs. The Mudbugs outshot the Blazers 19-8 during the first period, but trail 2-1 to begin the second after a shorthanded goal by Gio Flamminio (which is going to be the name of my Fantasy Baseball team this year if some automotive maker doesn't steal the name for a 2006 model). Jared Dumba score an even strength goal with 6:50 left in the first to give the Blazers the lead.

The Mudbugs were 0-4 during the first period on the power play, including one minute of a two man advantage). The Blazers were 0-3 with the man advantage. So far we have only seen the two blue line pairing of Chad Kemp with Jeremy Downs and Jason Basile with Quade Lightbody. We will see if Coach Scott Muscutt gets some fresh bodies on the D line with only four healthy skaters.

TIME - 8:17 PM



A Goal And A "Dangle"

Jason Basile scores his fourth goal of the year off of assists from Jason Campbell and Chris Brassard to put the Mudbugs in the lead at 14:58 of the first period. It seems somewhat appropriate that a player with the nickname of Blaze (Basile) would start the scoring tonight with an even strength goal.

Legendary hockey broadcaster and hockey ambassador Don Cherry used to talk about guys who had "dangle". These were the skaters that would explode through the neutral zone with the puck and leave opponents in their wake. I think it is safe to say that Ryan Manitowich has "Dangle". Manitowich, the native of Calgary, Alberta, seems to get at least two rushes to the net every game. Dangle on Manwich. Dangle on.

TIME - 7:35 PM

A penalty on the Walrus

Apparently head coach Doug Sauter forgot that six players needed to be on the starting line up card turned into the official scorer prior to the start of the game.

One minute into the first period at the first stoppage of play, referee Keith Kaval approached the scorers table and received the news and sent Justin Chwendoruk to the bench for two minutes. The player that he did not check was Right Wing Michel Beausoleil. I find this humorous since he took the time to write his name on the line up card. Maybe he is just used to being a man down all the time (217 times on the penalty kill will do that to you) and forgot what it was like to have five skaters on the ice.

Shane Palahicky was just escorted to the dressing room after injuring what looks like a knee. He was placing no pressure on the leg as he left the ice and was taken to the back room to have it attended to. I will try to keep you updated on the injury.

TIME - 7:23pm

Who's House? Montana's House.

I'm baaaaaaaaaaack. Roy Lang is currently covering Independence Bowl activities for the Shreveport Times so I will be pitching in relief of RL3. Tonight’s opponent is the Oklahoma City Blazers. The Blazers are currently third in the tough Northwest Division with a 15-11-0 record that is good for 30 points. They are coming off of a 5-4 win over division opponents the Wichita Thunder that saw a combined 235 penalty minutes (177 in the third period and overtime alone).

The Mudbugs are coming off of a 4-2 defeat at the hands of Notheast Division rival Memphis. The Mudbugs currently lead their division by three points with a 12-10-2 record that is good for 26 points. The good news is that the Mudbugs have won the last three games on home ice. The bad news is that the Blazers have won the last three games away from The Ford Center. The teams also rank 1-2 in attendance with the Mudbugs averaging 5,533 (the Blazers have drawn an average of 7,871 this year).

Tonight’s game marks the 17th time these two have faced off. The Blazers hold a 9-4-3 advantage in the series and the Mudbugs lead the series in the CenturyTel Center with a 4-3-1 record.

Expect a physical game tonight as the Blazers are pacing the CHL with a very healthy 966 penalty minutes per game that includes 58 majors, 10 game misconducts, and the only match penalty this season that will keep Blazer Tyler Fleck off of the ice tonight).

The Mudbugs will be without the services of defensemen Craig Minard granted leave by the CHL on 12/28), Chris Shaw, and Dale Lupul (both injured) tonight. Ken Carroll (6-6-1 2.47 GAA) will be in goal to face the Blazers who will start Sean Connors who sports a 10-6 record with a 2.78 GAA.

TIME: 6:45 PM

Friday, December 23, 2005

12-23 BUGS at MEMPHIS (L, 4-2)

AL SIMS HOOKS UP WITH AHL TEAM
Al Sims, the former coach of the Fort Worth Brahmas has been hired by the Pittsburgh Penguins to be an assistant coach of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton team in the American Hockey League.
I may not be that smart, but to me that seems like a step up, or at least a lateral move. The Penguins are the AHL's top team with a 24-3-2-1 record.

30 MINUTES NOT ENOUGH; MEMPHIS WINS 4-2
THe Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs controlled the final period and a half of this game, but the first 30 minutes -- and 3 Memphis goals -- equalled a loss for Bossier-Shreveport. The Mudbugs' three-game winning streak is over.
TIME: 9:20 p.m.

LATE PENALTY DOOMS BUGS?
Milan Vodrazka, who just minutes before scored his first pro goal, was called for a penalty with 3 minutes to go in the game.
TIME: 9:16 p.m.

MUDBUGS ALL OVER MEMPHIS
Bossier-Shreveport has the momentum, but it hasn't been able to get the tying goal just yet. There are still 3 minutes left.
TIME: 9:15 p.m.

VODRAZKA SCORES FIRST GOAL! 3-2 WITH 9 MINUTES REMAINING
Milan Vodrazka scored his first American professional goal to pull the Mudbugs within 2-1.
TIME: 9:05 p.m.

MUDBUGS LET CRUCIAL POWER PLAY SLIP AWAY
Bossier-Shreveport had a chance to get within one early in the third period when Kevin Harris took a holding penalty on Shane Palahicky. The Bugs were not able to capitilize. Still 3-1.
TIME: 8:59 p.m.

SHEPPARD SCORES TYING GOAL IN ROCHESTER
Scott Sheppard has one and and an assist tonight for the Rochester Americans. His goal tied the game against the Hamilton Bulldogs in the third period.
TIME: 8:57 p.m.

CAN MUDBUGS WIN WITHOUT 60-MINUTE EFFORT?
Bossier-Shreveport's game began at 8:15 p.m. -- too bad the first face-off was at 7:05 p.m. The Mudbugs trail 3-1 heading into the third with major concerns about the injury to rookie defenseman Dale Lupul.
TIME: 8:35 p.m.

PARSONS DELIVERS CRUSHING BLOW TO DALE LUPUL
Don Parsons leveled Mudbugs rookie defenseman Dale Lupul with what appeared to be a CLEAN shoulder check with just 48 seconds remaining in the second period. Lupul, who was carrying the puck and turned away from Parsons, was on the ice for a few minutes before skating off with the help of two teammates.
There was no argument from the Mudbugs. After watching the replay several times, I believe, in my humble opinion, the hit was clean. Will be interested to hear both teams' take.
TIME: 8:28 p.m.

WILDFONG GETS BUGS ON THE BOARD
Dan WIldfong scored from in front of the crease late in the second period to get the Mudbugs within 3-1.
TIME: 8:25 p.m.

MUDBUGS SHOW A SIGN OF LIFE
The line of Chad Spurr, Ryan Manitowich and Shane Palahicky shows the first sign of life for Bossier-Shreveport. The bad news: They didnt score and it didn't come until late in the SECOND PERIOD.
TIME: 8:20 p.m.

KINGS IN TOTAL CONTROL, UP 3-0
Newcomer Kevin Harris scored his first goal of the season on a delayed penalty 1"05 into the second period.
TIME: 7:57 p.m.

MEMPHIS UP 2-0 AFTER 1
The Mudbugs defense broke down late in the first period and the RiverKings were able to take a 2-0 lead when Ryan Campbell scored his 10th goal of the season all alone in front of Ken Carroll.
TIME: 7:31 p.m.

MUDBUGS GO ON POWER PLAY
Tonight will be test to see if the Mudbugs' power-play unit is getting back in the groove. Their first chance comes midway through the first period tonight with Memphis' earlier power-play tally the only score.
TIME: 7:26 p.m.

FORMER MUDBUG SIGNS WITH RIVERKINGS
Defenseman Derek McKinlay, who played for the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs during their last championship season, was signed by the Memphis RiverKings before Friday's game against the Mudbugs.
McKinlay spent the last two seasons with the Huntsville Havoc of the SPHL.
In 2000-01, McKinley recorded five goals and 15 assists in 48 regular-season games with the Mudbugs. He was pointless in three postseason efforts.
TIME: 7:22 p.m.

MEMPHIS SCORES EARLY POWER-PLAY GOAL
Darrell Stoddard scored to give the Memphis RiverKings a 1-0 lead 5:40 into Friday's game. The power-play goal came after a sweet centering dish from Travis Banga, who was behind the Mudbugs' net.
TIME: 7:15 p.m.

BUGS FACE CHL'S TOP POWER-PLAY UNTI FOR SECOND STRAIGHT NIGHT
After making the Wichita Thunder, then the Central Hockey League's best power-play unit, go 0-for-6 with the man-advantage, Bossier-Shreveport faces the RiverKings -- now the league's top power-play team.
Bossier-Shreveport successfully killed off Memphis' early power play.
TIME: 7:09 p.m.

WILDFONG TAKES PENALTY :26 IN
Dan WIldfong took a penalty in his CHL-high 20th straight game and the RiverKings have an early power play.
TIME: 7:07 p.m.

IT'S KEN CARROLL VS. GUY ST. VINCENT
The Mudbugs will send Ken Carroll between the posts while the RiverKings will play Guy St. Vincent.
TIME: 6:58 p.m.

MEMPHIS ALWAYS TOUGH HOSTS
The RiverKings are improving as the 2005-06 season rolls along and Mudbugs head coach Scott Muscutt says RiverKings coach Kevin McClelland is doing a great job. Memphis has made several moves lately, so expect a tougher squad tonight at the DeSoto Civic Center.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

12-22 BUGS vs. WICHITA (W, 5-2)

Sorry for late update from Thursday ... big migraine hit!

BUGS FINISH STRONG AGAIN
I'm beginnnig to buy into Scott Muscutt's theory about the final score not meaning much. It's how you win or lose, because if the Mudbugs give the effort Muscutt wants -- the wins will happen more than losses in the long run.
Thursday night, the Mudbugs took it to the Thunder in the second and third periods, and while those were the "least exciting" periods of the game, they were definitely the most important.
The Bugs shut down, for once, the Joe Blaznek line.
The game was 5-2, and 5 goals is certainly more than average, but the Mudbugs had several opportunities they DIDN'T score on. That, not the 5 goals scored, was the most positive thing about Thursday's victory. You get that many scoring chances against a quality team like Wichita and it will be tough NOT to score five times.
At times, the blue line, is still a bit inconsistent. There were more turnovers in the Mudbugs' end than Muscutt would like, but credit David Cacciola for a strong finish Thursday. I believe it was his best performance. The Mudbugs are fortunate to have two capable backups (Andrew Martin is on IR) to Ken Carroll.
Things are clicking as the Mudbugs enter Memphis tonight. The Spurr-Manitowich-Palahicky line was unstoppable Thursday and they need to be the same tonight.

STILL 3-2 ABOUT TO BEGIN THE THIRD
This is a big period of hockey for both teams. The Mudbugs want to continue the winning while the Thunder look to end the two-game slide on the road.
TIME: 8:55 p.m.

SECOND PERIOD SETTLES DOWN
After an action-packed first period, the second period has been about defense. It's still 3-2.
TIME: 8:24 p.m.

BUGS NEED TO SCORE NEXT GOAL
The sixth goal of this hockey game will be crucial. If Wichita ties it up, you would have to think the momentum will be with the Thunder. If the Bugs can make it 4-2, look for a blowout.
TIME: 8:04 p.m.

FAST-PACED GAME 3-2 ALREADY
Tab Lardner tied the game at 1 before Chris Brassard gave the Mudbugs a 2-1 lead early in the first period. After Matt Hanson tied the game at 2, Shane Palahicky gave Bossier-Shreveport a 3-2 lead.
Wichita coach Mark French pulled goaltender Sebastien Laplante after the Mudbugs' third goal.
TIME: 7:34 p.m.

LUPUL VS. COGHLAN (draw)
Mudbugs rookie defenseman Dale Lupul went toe-to-toe early with Wichita center Ryan Coghlan. Lupul may have held a slight advantage, but no significant shots were landed either way.
TIME: 7:18 p.m.

BUGS SCORE EARLY
Looks like the team that scored 11 goals in 2 games could be on the ice at the CenturyTel Center. Chad Spurr scored off a beautiful centering pass from Ryan Manitowich just 44 seconds into the game against Wichita to take a 1-0 lead.
TIME: 7:14 p.m.

CACCIOLA IN NET FOR MUDBUGS
Ken Carroll will get his first night off in a month. The Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs will start David Cacciola in net against the Wichita Thunder tonight. Cacciola is 2-1-1 with the Mudbugs with a 3.3 goals-against and a .870 save percentage.
Wichita will start Sebastien Laplante, who is 10-4-3.
TIME: 6:17 p.m.

WHO'S IT GONNA BE?
Which Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs team is going to show up? The team that scored 11 goals in its past 2 games or the one that scored 3 goals in the three games before the sweep of Fort Worth?
The Wichita Thunder, in addition to being a Northern Conference rival, have been a thorn in the side of the Mudbugs for two seasons. A victory tonight will give the Mudbugs plenty of momentum heading into Memphis on Friday.
The 5-0 win against Fort Worth was great, but it was the Brahmas -- winners of just 2 of their last 16 games. So, tonight is a much better test of where the Mudbugs currently stand. Not necessarily the final result, but the game against the Thunder -- assuming the Bugs give 100 percent -- will offer a gauge of where Bossier-Shreveport stacks up talent-wise.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

12-17 BUGS vs. FORT WORTH (W, 5-0)

BIG WIN
It's not always about if you win, but how you win. Look for more commentary about why tonight's victory was bigger than just two points.
TIME: 10:57 p.m.

BRASS MONKEY IS HISTORY
Chris Brassard scored his first goal of the season midway through the third period to give Bossier-Shreveport a 3-0 lead. Finally, maybe people will shut up about not being able to play anymore. The guy had a goal and two assists Saturday and has 15 points in 20 games this year.
TIME: 9:18 p.m.

NIGHT AND DAY
The Mudbugs came out a different team in the second period Saturday. With 20 shots on goal and two power-play goals, Bossier-Shreveport took a 2-0 lead. Will be interesting to see if the Mudbugs go for the juggular in the third. They need to.
TIME: 8:40 p.m.

MANITOWICH SCORES ON PP
Ryan Manitowich gives the Mudbugs a 1-0 lead with a power-play tally 6 minutes in.
TIME: 8:19 p.m.

POWER PLAY IS POWERLESS
At this point, the Mudbugs can not even set up shop in the opponent's zone during a 5-on-3. Fort Worth is now even on shots 7-7, despite not getting a shot on goal until 6:14 left in the period.
That was one disappointing, boring period of hockey.
TIME: 7:41 p.m.

HE SHOOTS AND, WELL, HE SHOOTS
Fort Worth's Bret Dececco sent a slap shot toward Mudbugs goalie Ken Carroll with 6:14 left in the first period. It was Fort Worth's first of the game!
TIME: 7:31 p.m.

WAKE ME UP BEFORE I GO GO
We're 12 minutes into the game and the Brahmas don't have a shot on goal. The Mudbugs have five, but they aren't playing much better.
Mudbugs about to go on second power play.
TIME: 7:24 p.m.

CARROLL VS. STERLING PART II
The Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs will try to regroup after a win (don't get to say that often) as they host the Fort Worth Brahmas again tonight at the CenturyTel Center.
TIME: 7:23 p.m.

Friday, December 16, 2005

12-16 BUGS vs. FORT WORTH (W, 6-5 in overtime)

WILDFONG SCORES IN OT
Mudbugs captain Dan Wildfong scored 42 seconds into overtime and the Mudbugs escape with a 6-5 victory.
TIME: 10:34 p.m.

LIGHTBODY TIES GAME
Mudbugs alternate captain and defenseman scored with 1:49 left to tie the game at 5.
TIME: 9:41 p.m.

BRAHMAS LEAD
With two goals in 58 seconds, the Fort Worth Brahmas have taken a 5-4 lead late in the third period at the CenturyTel Center. One of the most gut-wrenching choke jobs in Mudbugs history is in the works.
TIME: 9:32 p.m.

FORT WORTH STILL IN IT
Cory Stillman scored 17 seconds into the third period to pull the Brahmas within 4-3.
TIME: 9:13 p.m.

MORE QUICK TALLIES IN SECOND
The Mudbugs and Brahmas traded goals in a 12-second span late in the second period. Jason Campbell scored for Bossier-Shreveport to give the Mudbugs a 4-1 lead before Bret Dececco collected his 14th of the season to make it 4-2.
TIME: 8:36 p.m.

NOT DOING KEN CARROLL A FAVOR
Again, the shot keeper Friday night wasn't helping Mudbugs goaltender Ken Carroll. Maybe they figure they're doing the Mudbugs a favor by counting every shot that nears the opponents net, but being extremely stubborn concering the opponents' shot total. Not true, it's only a disservice to Ken Carroll, whose save percentage is hindered. Early in the second period, the Brahmas berated Carroll on a power play, but were credited with just two shots on goal.
TIME: 8:18 p.m.

BUGS OUTSHOOT FORT WORTH 14-2
Bossier-Shreveport had the first period they needed. The Mudbugs outshot Fort Worth 14-2 and lead 3-1. Fort Worth looks terrible.
TIME: 7:47 p.m.

CHICKETY CZECH
Martin Stuchlik, from Zlin, Czech Republic, gave the Mudbugs a 3-1 lead with laser slapper with 3 minutes left in the first period.
TIME: 7:41 p.m.

FAST AND THE FURIOUS
Eleven seconds after Fort Worth went on its first power play, Wes Mason scored to tie the game at 1. Just 14 seconds after that, Ryan Manitowich gave the Mudbugs the lead again when he deflected a Chad Spurr centering pass past Larry Sterling.
Mudbugs 2-1, 10 to go in first.
TIME: 7:25 p.m.

BUGS 0-1 on PP
The Mudbugs, who had been outshooting Fort Worth 6-0, went shotless on their first power play of the evening. Fort Worth did get one shot on Ken Carroll.
TIME: 7:19 p.m.

LIGHTBODY VS. COUGHLIN
Quade Lightbody was patient in his bout against Matt Coughlin, but eventually the Mudbugs alternate captain took it to Fort Worth’s defenseman and that brought the crowd to its feet in the game's first bout.
TIME: 7:17 p.m.

MINARD SCORES FROM BLUE LINE
Mudbugs defenseman Craig Minard scored on a soft shot/pass toward the front of the net as forward Jason Campbell screened goaltender Larry Sterling.
Bugs lead 1-0 with 17 to go in first.
TIME: 7:11 p.m.

ANOTHER POST
Mudbugs captain Dan Wildfong rang on off the post in the first minute of Friday's game against Fort Worth.
TIME: 7:07 p.m.

CARROLL IN NET
Mudbugs perennial All-Star Ken Carroll will start tonight against the Fort Worth Brahmas. Bossier-Shreveport (9-9-2) and Fort Worth (8-12-2) are fighting to get back to first place in the Northeast Division of the Central Hockey League.
Larry Sterling will start for the Brahmas.
TIME: 6:56 p.m.

STATISTICALLY SPEAKING
Through 20 games of the season, there are plenty of statistics to mull over. We'll just throw a few out there and let you decide what they mean.

THE GOOD?
The Mudbugs own a winning record within the Northeast Division.

THe Mudbugs rank No. 2 in attendance (5,673)

The Mudbugs have outscored their opponents 23-15 in the third period.

The Mudbugs have outshot their opponents in the first, second and third periods.

The Mudbugs have not lost a game in regulation when leading after two periods (5-0-2).

The Mudbugs have allowed the least amount of goals (60) in the league.

THE BAD?
Only one team (Rio Grande Valley, 0-2) has a losing record against the Northeast Division, not counting Northeast teams themselves of course.

Only four teams in the 15-team Central Hockey League have less points than the Mudbugs.

The Mudbugs do not have one player in the top 18 in scoring in the CHL.

Dale Lupul is riding an eight-game pointless streak.

Opponents are outperformaning the Mudbugs 20.8 percent to 13.4 percent on the power play AT THE CTC.

The Mudbugs have lost (2) more games then they've won (1) when leading after one period.

THe Mudbugs have only led after one period three times in 20 games.

The Mudbugs have lost 7 of 9 games (2-7) when trailing after two (The Mudbugs lost only seven games ALL OF LAST YEAR when trailing after two and compiled a 6-6-1 record.)

Friday, December 09, 2005

12-9 BUGS at AUSTIN (L, 2-1)

BAD NEWS ALL AROUND
Austin scored a power-play goal early in the third period to emerge with a 2-1 victory against the Mudbugs. Bossier-Shreveport went 0-9 on the power play.
The Colorado Eagles scored late in Memphis to tie the game, then saw Riley Nelson score 19 seconds into overtime to win 5-4.
TIME: 9:34 p.m.

FULL 5-ON-3 GOES TO WASTE; GAME TIED AT 1 AFTER TWO
The Mudbugs fell to 0 for 7 on the power play as a two-minute 5-on-3 went by the wayside late in the second period.
TIME: 9:06 p.m.

CAPTAIN WILDFONG RESPONDS
Dan Wildfong might be the guy to help the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs pick things up. The captain responded to John McNabb's goal with one of his own -- less than three minutes later -- and the Bugs are tied 1-1 in Austin.
TIME: 7:50 p.m.

AUSTIN SCORES QUICKLY
The bad news continues. The Ice Bats scored less than three minutes into Friday game and the Mudbugs find themselves trailing 1-0.
TIME: 7:49 p.m.

CARROLL VS. KOPRIVA IN NET TONIGHT
TIME: 7:30 p.m.

STAT OF THE DAY
Two of the Mudbugs' nine victories have come against teams with a winning record -- Nov. 2 at Colorado and Nov. 18 at Wichita.

WELL THE SUN CAME UP AGAIN TODAY
Mudbugs fans must be happy a new day has arrived. The team is in Austin, and will face the Ice Bats tonight, trying to turn things around. The Ice Bats -- losers by an 11-2 tally their last time out -- seem to be a perfect victim.
As expected, and rightfully so, Mudbugs fans went off the deep end after Thursday's debacle against Colorado. However, those calling for Scott Muscutt's head are way out of line. This is a coach with the best record in the CHL since his arrival. The team is struggling, but give him time. We aren't even 1/3 of the way through the season.
Even if the worst-case scenario happens, and the Mudbugs don't make the playoffs, Muscutt deserves a mulligan -- assuming he doesn't do anything ridiculous to embarrass the team.
Bottom line, like I said last night right here, someone has to step up to the plate and get this team going.
The Mudbugs SHOULD win tonight, the team they are playing just isn't good. No, it won't make things right, but tonight offers a possibility to defeat a team and build momentum for the next time the Mudbugs face a playoff-caliber team.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

12-8 BUGS vs. COLORADO (L, 4-1)

IN SUMMARY (not for the faint of heart)
There is a big problem right now. Obviously, this team has some issues. That was completely evident when they threw in the towel after Colorado took a 2-1 lead, moments after the Bugs tied that game at 1 midway through the second period.
Granted, the goal by Ryan Tobler was huge, as the Mudbugs had just garnered all the momentum, but Bossier-Shreveport must be bigger than that. There have been worse goals scored against this team.
The shot board said the Mudbugs had a 37-23 advantage over Colorado (I call BS on that). That was in no way reflective of how the game played out. The Eagles had good chances all night, the Mudbugs didn't.
Someone must step up and hold this team accountable. Scott Muscutt may not want to be that guy right now. For the fourth time this season, Muscutt was not readily available for comment after a loss.
I understand things are tenuous, and the Mudbugs have been treading mediocre water for a month now, but it's in the job description. Plus, readers want to hear what he has to say. And it's league policy?
Back to the team. Many may forget, I don't, that in my preseason prediction column I predicted a rough start for this team. The hate mail came flying in about how much fire power the Mudbugs had. They do, or did before Scott Sheppard left, but the makeup was different, and the loss of Travis Bell was huge.
This team has to decide if it's going to adapt the wide-open style of play or play good old Mudbugs defensive hockey. The problem is their defense isn't good enough to rely on right now, therefore, the offense must begin to open it up on the other side.
Is it all gloom and doom? Heck no. The Mudbugs are still in first place, but this quality of hockey is not what this franchise is about and will not keep them on top of the Northeast Division. Thankfully they are in the Northeast, not the Northwest Division.
Frankly, Colorado is the class of the Central Hockey League. The Eagles are just better and I'm not sure the addition of Sheppard will make a difference. However, the Mudbugs have proved in the past they can stick with a more talented bunch come playoff time.
The only thing that will get this team out of it's funk right now is a spectacular performance, by the team OR an individual. Maybe it's going to take a bout in the clubhouse. Who knows, but SOMEONE must step it up.
TIME: 11:44 p.m.

THE BUGS JUST AREN'T GOOD RIGHT NOW
Bossier-Shreveport can't score on the power play, and can't stop anyone short-handed (Greg Pankewicz just added another PP tally).

4-1 Eagles -- turn out the lights.

TIME: 9:12 p.m

3-1 AT THE END OF TWO. MUDBUGS CAN'T ASK FOR MUCH MORE
Bossier-Shreveport owns a 8-2 power-play advantage, yet trails 3-1 heading into the third period of play. Head coach Scott Muscutt believed his special teams unit would show up big tonight.

Point blank -- THEY HAVEN'T.

TIME: 8:36 p.m.

MORE HARD WORK GIVES EAGLES 3-1 LEAD
Sean Robertson worked hard to get a rebound past Ken Carroll to give Colorado a 3-1 lead late in the second period here.

The almost-shorty has really changed the momentum in this game.

TIME: 8:26 p.m.

BUGS SCORE, COLORADO TAKES LEAD 30 SECONDS LATER
The Mudbugs finally scored on a 5-on-3 power play to tie the game at 1, but Colorado scored an unofficial short-handed goal (one second after Mudbugs' power play ended) to take a 2-1 lead.

TIME: 8:20 p.m.

5-on-3 CHANCE FOR BUGS
The Mudbugs had a two-man advantage early in the second but didn't get much in the way of scoring chances. Colorado is truly putting the clamps on a special teams unit that is struggling to find quality opportunities. Stil 1-0 Eagles.

TIME: 8:04 p.m.

CELEBRITIES ABOUND
The Times' most famous employee, "Hodges," is here at the CTC. There was nothing more surprising than to see the appearance in the press box. Can you say IHOP?

TIME: 7:50 p.m.

EAGLES UP 1-0 AFTER FIRST
Filipic's goal held up through the first period and the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs finally showed some signs of life at the end of the period. The Mudbugs have 1:37 left on a power play heading into the second period and they need to continue the momentum they garnered.

For the first 18 minutes of the first, the play was totally one-sided. Colorado is up 14-6 on the shot board.

TIME: 7:42 p.m.

COLORADO SCORES QUICKLY
Eagles forward Fraser Filipic scored just SIX seconds into Colorado's first power-play chance.
The Mudbugs just recorded their first shot on goal, 7:36 into the game.

This doesn't look good.

TIME: 7:19 p.m.

CAN I GET A SHOT PLEASE?
We're six minutes into the game and the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs have not recorded a shot on goal. Colorado has 8!

TIME: 7:16 p.m.

OK CROWD TONIGHT
The Mudbugs are competiting against the state football championships tonight, but I expected a little better crowd for the crucial matchup with Colorado. Looks like about 3,500, which would be the lowest of the season.

TIME: 7:14 p.m.

WELCOME BACK TO THE CTC KEN CARROLL
The crowd went crazy as goaltender Ken Carroll was introduced Thursday. They should, it's Carroll's first start in this building since OCTOBER 28.

TIME: 7:06 p.m.

FEEL LIKE RAJAN NOW
I did all this Mudbugs/Ken Carroll vs. Jeff Blair stuff for the paper only to watch Blair not get the start. Of course Greg Rajan can feel my pain. He had a big Dion Hyman piece planned for Tuesday before Hyman went crazy and got kicked off the Corpus Christi Rayz after just two days.

TIME: 6:30 p.m.

BLAIR NOT IN GOAL
The Colorado Eagles will not start Jeff Blair in goal tonight. Paulo Colaiacovo will start between the pipes. Thanks a lot (Colorado head coach) Chris Stewart! Jerk. :)

TIME: 6:10 p.m.

WHO WILL BE IN NET?
It's certain Ken Carroll will be between the pipes for the Mudbugs tonight, but who will represent the Colorado Eagles? It would be nice to have Jeff Blair on the other side. It would add to the intensity of the game and get the crowd into it for sure.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

12-3 BUGS at LAREDO (L, 3-1)

EMBARRASSING, BRUTAL, ANEMIC ... TAKE YOUR PICK
The Mudbugs power-play is downright horrible right now. Laredo spent more time with the puck short-handed than the purple and teal team did with the man-advantage. REMINDER: Laredo is 12th in the CHL on the penalty kill.
0 for 8. Game over, 3-1. No one to blame here.
TIME: 10:02 p.m.

BUGS GET 8th CHANCE THANKS TO BAD PENALTY BY HIEBERT
Can they take advantage?

BUGS DROP TO 0 FOR 7 ON PP
You can begin to dim the lights. The Mudbugs have mustered nary a scoring opportunity, and don't appear likely to do it now.
TIME: 9:50 p.m.

ANOTHER POWER PLAY IS HISTORY
For the second time Saturday, a Mudbugs penalty ended a power-play chance. When you're down 3-1 in the third, this can't happen.
TIME: 9:34 p.m.

POWER PLAY VERY UNPRODUCTIVE
The Mudbugs power play must improve. Bossier-Shreveport was 11th out of 15 Central Hockey League teams heading in Saturday. However, Laredo's penalty-kill unit was worse, believe it or not. They rank 12th.
TIME: 9:33 p.m.

AHLer HELPS LAREDO TAKE BACK MOMENTUM
The Bucks scored a huge goal seconds after Shane Palahicky's penalty shot. Laredo's power-play tally gave Laredo a 3-1 lead. Lancy Monych, sent down from San Antonio of the AHL, scored. That should make Mudbugs fans happy. Not.
TIME: 8:50 p.m.

PALAHICKY SCORES ON PENALTY SHOT
Palahicky was tripped on his way toward the Laredo net while short-handed and awarded a penalty shot. His wrist shot beat Grumet-Morris to pull the Mudbugs within 2-1. The goal is considered short-handed.
TIME: 8:47 p.m.

BUCKS COME OUT STRONG, TAKE 2-0 LEAD
Serge Dube did it again. This time he was parked on the weak side of the crease next to Mudbugs goaltender Ken Carroll. Dube tipped in a rebound to give Laredo a 2-0 lead early in the second.
TIME: 8:35 p.m.

BUCKS MAKE BUGS LOOK SILLY, TAKE 1-0 LEAD
Jeff Bes executed a wonderful pass to Serge Dube late in the first period and the defenseman beat Ken Carroll for his eighth goal of the season. Bes feathered a pass to the empty space in the middle of the Mudbugs zone, Dube got past Mudbugs defenseman Craig Minard, faked a shot, stopped briefly and easily beat Carroll, who had fallen to the ice on the deke.
Laredo took the one-goal advantage to the locker room, despite the fact the Bugs played solid hockey for the first 18 mintues.
TIME: 8:08 p.m.

HE SAID IT AGAIN
Joe Dominey, Laredo's play-by-play man, commented again on Brassard's 0 goals in 15 games.
TIME: 8:04 p.m.

BUGS' EARLY POWER PLAY SNUFFED OUT BY .. BUGS
Brett Smith's interference penalty wiped out the second half of an early four-minute power play for Bossier-Shreveport. Now, Dan Wildfong is off to the box, which will set up a Laredo 5-on-3.
TIME: 7:44 p.m.

BRASS WILL DO IT THIS TIME, I PROMISE
Joe Dominey just did exactly what Chris Brassard needed. He commented on Brassard's scoring slump. Anyone in the media knows, as soon as you mention a streak, it ends. The Mudbugs begin this game with a four-minute power play after a high stick to the face of Chad Spurr.
Brassard is a power-play specialist .....
Time: 7:38 p.m.

ODE TO MR. MCLEOD
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Scott McLeod, the mastermind behind the GameBlog in my absence. He was awesome and, of course, funny. Have ya won the Powerball yet Scott?
Thanks dude.
Time: 7:25 p.m.

CARROLL IN NET AGAIN
Well, he's had plenty of rest. Ken Carroll who collected a 4-1 victory Friday night -- his first appearance in a month -- will be in net again for the Mudbugs tonight in Laredo.
Dov Grumet-Morris will be between the pipes for the Bucks. With names such as DOV and GRUMET, how in the heck does MORRIS fit in there?
TIME: 7:23 p.m.

HYMAN TRADED TO CORPUS
We've heard the rumors, now it's official, Dion Hyman was traded to the Corpus Christi Rayz for future considerations. He had been suspended by the team and the relationship between Hyman and Fort Worth coach Al Sims was rocky from the get go.
TIME: 7:16 p.m.

Time to visit Rufus and Co.
The Laredo Entertainment Center will be buzzing again tonight as the Mudbugs come to town. This is likely the most intense interconference rivalry, thanks to the 2004 seven-game Finals.

12-2 BUGS at FORT WORTH (W, 4-1)

THEY HAD TO STEP UP
With Scott Sheppard gone, the entire Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs squad must step to the plate and score some goals. Friday, that's exactly what happened when four different Mudbygs scored in a 4-1 victory over Fort Worth.
Jason Campbell scored in his return, and so did Martin Stuchlik, Dan Wildfong and Brett Smith.
Another big effort is going to be needed Saturday at Laredo.