Bats Control the Air Over Iguanas - ITC
By Jason Cohen
Traffic on IH-35 slowed the Ice Bats down. The San Antonio
In a game that
was delayed 45 minutes because of a tardy Austin bus,
Jeff Greenlaw scored 16 seconds in and Daniel Tetrault
had two power-play goals, leading the Bats to a 4-1
win in Game One of the Central Hockey League first-round
Contrary to postseason
conventional wisdom, no whistles were swallowed on this
night, unless referee Gord Dwyer accidentally gulped
the sucker down while using it so much. There were 70
PiMs in the first two periods alone, and while certain
opportunities only lasted 20 or 30 seconds because of
successive calls, Austin finished the night with an
astounding 13 chances. San Antonio had six.
on the few chances they got and that's the bottom line
of that, Iguanas head coach Chris Stewart said.
I think we could have played with a lot more discipline
than we showed tonight. The important thing is to keep
it five on five and not give them the power plays, because
while some calls were questionable, we sunk our own
ship by not playing intelligent."
a couple of unnecessary penalties early in the game,
but after that we decided we werent going to retaliate,
Austin captain Jeff Greenlaw said.
Eric Labelle and Dominic Periard were particularly impressive,
agitating beautifully against San Antonios more
established bad boys.
Ice Bats head coach Brent Hughes called the duos
contribution. [Labelle] got in the face of guys,
and Dom wasnt taking any crap from anyone. He
stood up for himself against Ken Richardson, one of
the toughest guys in the league.
predictably chippy in the third period, but that
was just them trying to send a message for tomorrow
night that theyre not going to back down,
Greenlaw said. And that team wont -- theyre
too good. Itll be another hard fought game. Whoever
makes the fewest mistakes will win.
the game with fellow bruiser Ryan Anderson around center
Kelly Smart. Off the draw, Smart came out of the corner
and set up pinching defenseman Mike Gaffney, whose shot
landed in the crease for Greenlaw to sweep up.
So much for that
grueling bus ride.
pretty loose, Greenlaw shrugged. They had
to wait for us.
the tone of the game, Hughes said of the early
score. We knew the goals were going to come at
the front of the net.
Clay Awe made it 1-1 with a power-play goal at 13:44
of the first, a nicely placed high one from the left
the lead courtesy of Tetrault less than four minutes
later, one second after four-on-four play gave way to
it over, I got it back to Brett Seguin and he made a
nice pass near the red line, Tetrault said. I
was going in two on one with Dan Price wide. I looked
at him the whole time to fool [SA goalie Brent Belecki],
then shot it five hole.
the game away at 16:36 of the second period with his
five-on-three marker, a wide-open blast from the high
slot with the other seven skaters mostly battling behind
the net. Price and Gerald Tallaire assisted. Ryan Edwards
and Mark DeSantis, the latter of whom will not be sending
Dwyer a box of chocolates any time soon, were the Iggies
in the box.
Bryan McMullen stopped 30 shots to earn his first carer
playoff win in an Ice Bats sweater. Belecki stopped
28. His play, along with a strong Iguanas penalty kill,
kept the game from getting out of hand. Since Austins
power-play goals came off the rush and five-on-three,
Hughes wasnt too impressed with his unit, the
best in the CHL during the regular season.
the most disappointing part of the game, he said.
We werent on loose pucks, there was no puck
support on the dump-ins, no rebounds, no anything. That
power play wasnt us.
Game Two is in
Austin at 7:30pm Saturday night.
For Austin fans, its almost like the Central Texas
Stampede never went away. In five Western Professional
Hockey League seasons, the Bats never got a playoff
contest with its most heated, hated rival, the now-defunct
hockey club just up 35 in Belton. But in the post-merger
Central Hockey League, Austin gets a backyard playoff
brawl with the Iguanas first time out. Theres
nothing like a series where you cant tell which
team scored just from crowd sound at both Freeman
Coliseum and the Travis County Expo Center, hundreds
of road fans have made their presence felt.
is also showing off the ice. Last weekend, several Bats
players returned to the teams practice rink after
a two-day road trip to find their cars had been decorated
in Silly String with pro-Iguanas smack.
Gus Garcia and his San Antonio counterpart Ed Garza
have a wager on the series. The loser will don the winning
teams sweater at a city council meeting. Apparently,
puffy tacos vs. migas dont provide enough of a
culinary distinction for a traditional politico foodstuff