SHREVEPORT, LA – The Wichita Falls Warriors (18-9-1-4) dropped the first two games of the three game weekend series at the top team in the South Division in the Shreveport Mudbugs (22-7-2-2) but would have a third opportunity on Sunday afternoon.
With the quick turnaround from the long 10 round shootout contest the night before, one would expect a different pace of play, but that was not the case for Wichita Falls. The Warriors came out firing and putting instant pressure on Shreveport goaltender Arseni Sergeyev and forcing him to make some early stops. The Warriors pressure would result in the puck finding the back of the net on the second of three power plays in the period as Carter Korpi (12) went behind the net and found Drew Vieten (12) in front who battled to get the puck across the goal-line and give the Warriors a 1-0 just 6:51 into the first period. The Warriors outshot the Mudbugs 15-6 in the opening frame and took a one goal advantage to the first intermission.
In the second period the physical play would start to pick up as the two sides expressed their dislike for the other team after two hard fought contests the nights before. Warriors goaltender Owen Bartoszkiewicz made some key and timely saves in the second period to help get his team to the third period still holding on to the 1-0 lead. After two periods the Warriors had outshot the Mudbugs 29-15.
In the third period, the Warriors would quickly stretch their lead to 2-0 as Carter Korpi (13) showed off his speed, rushing past the defense and put a nice move on Sergeyev 4:31 into the final frame of regulation scoring his 13th goal of the season, tying Thomas Weis for the team lead. Korpi finished the game with 3 points on a goal and an assist. The Mudbugs pulled Sergeyev with 2:30 left in the game in a late effort to get back into the game trailing by two goals and searching for offense. The extra attacker would help get the Mudbugs within one late with a goal from the point 18:25 into the third. They would empty the net once more but this time with only 13 seconds left and Shreveport would run out of time. The Warriors hung on for a big 2-1 win on the road to end the three game weekend series and improving to 41 points on the season.
Owen Bartoszkiewicz (15-6-1-2) recorded the win for Wichita Falls. He recorded 25 saves on 26 shots faced. Arseni Sergeyev (5-2-0-1) recorded the loss for Shreveport. He recorded 42 saves on 44 shots faced.
Next up, the Warriors return home for a weekend series with the Amarillo Bulls beginning on Friday, March 12th at the Kay Yeager Coliseum. Puck drop is set for 7:05 PM.