Todd Nelson isn’t unwilling to be forthright about his hockey club. As a matter of fact, he’s not unattached from reality. He realizes his team has holes, needs some upswing soon, and understand the importance of a sunny disposition in the face of difficult times. “We’re a young hockey team, and young hockey teams make mistakes,” he said prior to last night’s game against the Texas Stars. Both offensively, defensively, and in net, the roster that hit the ice last night was both these things – young and mistake prone.
The Texas Stars would nab their sixth win in a row with a 3-0 victory over the Oklahoma City Barons that was highlighted by an incredible night for young goaltender, Jack Campbell.
Again, the Oklahoma City Barons would dominate the shots on net nearly doubling the Stars. And this makes being shutout seem a tad more unbearable.
The first period was a pleasant start to an entertaining game (for at least two periods). The first line of Toni Rajala, Mark Arcobello, and Philippe Cornet, which individually produced the night before, would be viewed as an ironic season epitome as two thirds of that line were playing in the ECHL a little over a week ago. Around the eight minute mark, newcomer Andrew Hotham committed a terrible delay of game penalty that would eventually result in a Stars power play goal from Matt Fraser. Despite seven shots by Oklahoma City, and early and late power play opportunities, they were unable to score. The first twenty minutes were in the books with Texas on top, 1-0.
The second period was a lazy endeavor from both teams. Not a lot of movement, brief moments of charisma, no penalties, and again a scoreless period for Oklahoma City. The second period ended with a 1-0 Stars lead.
The third period was a gale force wind for Oklahoma City as they gave Jack Campbell a hard time, peppering him with eighteen shots. Most of those shots came following a Colton Sceviour goal in the first three minutes of the period, and suddenly the Barons had to attempt to dig themselves out of a two goal hole. Mark Arcobello, leading the team with nine shots, as well as Toni Rajala and Josh Green gave some commitment to putting their team on top, but it just wasn’t meant to be. The Stars would end the game with an empty net goal, and the victory in tow. The Barons lose three straight, and only earn one out of a possible six points in the three-in-three homestand. Gulp.