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Ice Bats Roar Late over Lubbock

The Austin Ice Bats scored three times in the final seven minutes to roar away from the Lubbock Cotton Kings, 5-3 Thursday night at Chaparral Ice Arena. Winger Henry Kuster scored twice and had an assist to lead Ice Bats scoring.

Kuster put the Bats on the board first at 14:29 of the first period, snapping off a shot between the circles. But the Cotton Kings tied the score 1:13 later on a Jimmy Callahan goal.

Lubbock took its first lead 2:41 into the second period on a Paul McBrien score, but the Bats retied the count on Julian Smith's goal 2:43 into the third.

The Cotton Kings gained their final lead on Mike Carter's goal midway through the third, but the Bats began their three-goal rampage at 13:49. Defenseman Chad McIver threaded in the tying goal from the point at 13:49. Kuster scored his second on a rebound less than a minute later, and Jason Kenyon capped scoring with 3:34 remaining.

The Bats outshot Lubbock 50-29 to up their record to 12-11-6, and move within three points of second-place Corpus Christi. The Ice Bats visit division-leading Laredo tomorrow, then return home to face Rio Grande Valley Saturday.
 

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Hounds Start '07 on Right Foot with Win

The Youngstown SteelHounds started off the new year on a high note with a convincing and dominating 5-2 victory over the Rocky Mountain Rage, on the road on Thursday night. Youngstown would get it going in the first period with Stephen Margeson putting in his fifth of the season at 12:02 to make it 1-0 Hounds. The Rage would answer back just three minutes later with Chip Donleavy tying the game at one. That would not last long though as Jeff Alcombrack would beat goaltender Trevor Cunning just nine seconds later to make it 2-1 Y-Town after one period.

The second period saw Rocky Mountain tie it up just 39 seconds in on a Clay Plume goal, but that would be as close as the Rage would get as the Hounds would score three unanswered the rest of the way out with Jeff Christian netting his 18th of the season to extend his point streak to 16 games. His goal would be the official game winner but there was extra insurance with two power play goals by Chris Richards and Brad Patterson to make it a 5-2 final for the Hounds.

With the win the SteelHounds improve to 15-8-6 for 36 points and puts them back in second place behind the Memphis Riverkings for first place in the Northeast division. The road trip continues for the Hounds as they will be at the Colorado Eagles tonight at 9:05pm EST. All games are available on ESPN Radio 1240-The Fan and steelhounds.com.
 

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Sundogs Hold Lead Midway Through Third, Lose 5-3

PRESCOTT VALLEY, Ariz. - The Arizona Sundogs and the Colorado Eagles faced off Thursday evening in a game originally scheduled for December 22 but was postponed due to a blizzard that dumped more than two-feet of snow in Denver and the surrounding areas. Arizona would hold a one goal lead the entire game until Colorado would take their first lead of the game with less than ten minutes to play in regulation. Colorado would eventually win 5-3, their 12th straight victory, the longest in the CHL to date. Kelly and Stillman would both finish with two points apiece for Arizona in the loss.

In the first period Arizona would strike first as Colorado would take three penalties in 1:24 giving the Sundogs a two-man advantage. Brent Kelly would score his league-leading 21st goal of the season at the 7:27 mark on passes from Dan DaSilva and Cory Stillman. Arizona would finish 1-for-4 with the man advantage in the first period while the Eagles would go 0-for-1 on the power play to start the game.

At 3:23 of the second period, Colorado's Ed McGrane would match Arizona's first goal on a pass from Craig Strain. McGrane's marker would come on the penalty kill giving the Eagles their CHL best 21st shorthanded goal of the season. At 5:50 of the middle frame the Sundogs would regain the lead collecting their second power play goal of the game from defenseman and former University of Denver Pioneer Max Bull. Cory Stillman and Chris Bartolone would assist on the play. The Eagles would again climb even with Arizona at 12:36 of the period on a Chris Hartsburg goal from Seth Leonard. With less than two-minutes to play in the second, Colorado netminder Marco Emond mishandled the puck behind the net giving the puck to Kelly who found Jordan Mowbray out front for an open net goal at the 18:04 mark to give the Sundogs a one goal lead for the third time of the game.

More than half the third period would pass before the game would see its next goal. Colorado would even the score for the third time of the game at the 9:45 mark on a goal from Ed McGrane, assisted by Leonard and Aaron Schneekloth. At 12:10 of the third period, Martin Doyle would be tagged with a roughing call giving Colorado their eighth power play chance of the night. The Eagles would convert quickly as Seth Leonard would tally his first goal of the game and third point on a pass from McGrane and Scott Polaski to give the Eagles their first lead of the night. Arizona would see a two-man advantage for the final 1:27 in regulation as they would pull Mayotte while on a power play but would be unable to convert as McGrane would score an empty net goal, his third of the game to secure the 5-3 win.

Arizona netminder Kris Mayotte would see his first start in four games, stopping 33 of 37 shots faced in the loss while Colorado goalie Marco Emond stopped 28 of 31 for the win. Arizona finished 2-for-9 on the power play while the Eagles went 1-for-8. Next up for the Sundogs is the Rocky Mountain Rage on Friday in Broomfield, Colorado. It will be the third meeting between Arizona and Rocky Mountain and the first at the Broomfield Event Center. Arizona leads the series 2-0. Game time is set for 7:05pm and can be heard live on 96.7 FM The Wolf, the Official Broadcast Home of the Arizona Sundogs.
 

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Colorado Comeback Beats Sundogs 5-3

LOVELAND, Colo.- Ed McGrane had a hat-trick including two shorthanded goals as the Colorado Eagles beat the Arizona Sundogs 5-3 at the Budweiser Events Center for their 12th straight victory. The string of wins ties the team's and Central Hockey League's all-time mark for consecutive wins. Seth Leonard added a goal and two assists and Marco Emond stopped 28 of 31 shots for his ninth consecutive win between the pipes. For Arizona, Brent Kelly had a goal and an assist and Cory Stillman tallied two assists in the loss. The Eagles will play the Youngstown SteelHounds tomorrow night at the Budweiser Events Center at 7:05 p.m. MST.

Colorado came out early in the first period and had a couple quality scoring chances including a puck that banged off the crossbar however they were not able to capitalize. Arizona Brent Kelly did capitalize on the power play for the Sundogs on a slapshot that snuck underneath the glove of Marco Emond. He was assisted by Dan Da Silva and Chris Bartolone on his league-leading 21st goal of the season. The score remained 1-0 after one period of play.

Ed McGrane tied the game at one at the 3:23 mark of the second period on the Eagles league-leading 21st shorthanded goal of the season. He was assisted by Craig Strain on the play. Max Bull gave Arizona a 2-1 lead on another power play goal just over two minutes after the McGrane goal. Again the Eagles fought back when Chris Hartsburg found the net on a centering pass from Seth Leonard. The goal was his 14th of the season setting a career-high. At the 18:04 mark, Colorado turned the puck over in their own zone and Arizona capitalized on a goal by Jordan Mowbray as he went top shelf over a sprawling Emond. After two periods, Arizona held on to their one-goal lead at 3-2.

McGrane scored his second goal at the 9:39 mark tying the game at three. He was assisted by Seth Leonard and Aaron Schneekloth. Colorado continued their pressure and it was Seth Leonard that scored on the power play on what was ultimately the game winning goal at the 12:29 mark. At the end of the third period, Ryan Tobler took a penalty for roughing with 1:27 remaining giving the Sundogs a six-on-four empty net situation. The Eagles held firm and with three seconds remaining Ed McGrane flipped a backhand 150 feet into the net giving the Eagles a 5-3 win. The game marked the 12th consecutive victory for the Eagles tying the team and Central Hockey League record for consecutive wins. The Eagles will host the Youngstown SteelHounds Friday night at the Budweiser Events Center at 7:05 p.m. MST.
 

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SteelHounds Prepare to Lend Helping Hand in New Orleans

YOUNGSTOWN, OHIO - The Youngstown SteelHounds are in the early part of a six-game, 12-day road trip that will allow them to take some of their focus off the ice and on to a cause in Southern Louisiana that caught the nation's attention during the Hurricane Katrina aftermath, community service. On Monday, January 8th, the SteelHounds will be participating in several different community initiatives in New Orleans lending a hand with the many needs that still pose a challenge to the city on a comeback.

"When Mike (Athletic Trainer Mike Ermatinger) brought this idea to me I was very excited and thought it was perfect for us while we were in Louisiana," said Kaminski. "Nothing makes the soul feel better than helping others and to give our young men a chance to do this is an honor and privilege and one of the good things about being a coach to these players."

The SteelHounds will be pitching in to help the millions of hundred of thousands of volunteers in an effort to rebuild the Emerald City. The Hounds will be assisting families in Central City, Gert Town, Holy Cross and Pontchartrain Park in rebuilding their homes, working with Parkway Partners to landscape, cleaning and painting childcare facilities, schools and neighborhood clean-ups and just lending a helping hand and caring heart to help rebuild energy and spirit.

The coach, players, trainers and road staff will be working in conjunction with Mardi Gras Service Corps to assist with the different endeavors. Mardi Gras Service Corps was created after Hurricane Katrina by a team of founding members from many different organizations including Concordia LLC., Tulane University/Service Learning Program, Agenda for Children and many others, for the sole purpose of getting New Orleans up and running again.

"Playing professional sports for a living can sometimes shield you from the many struggles and hurdles people have to go through," said team Captain Jeff Christian. "This project will certainly give everyone a chance to help someone else and feel a little more appreciative not only in their ability to impact others but in their blessed life."

The SteelHounds are scheduled to play the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs on Thursday, January 11th and will be in New Orleans during the early part of the week working with the Mardi Gras Service Corps.

For more information contact the SteelHounds Media Relations department at (330) 747-PUCK (7825) or visit the team's online home at Youngstown SteelHounds Hockey, Central Hockey League, Youngstown, Ohio.

--steelhounds.com--

***Fans, also be sure to visit Youngstown SteelHounds Hockey, Central Hockey League, Youngstown, Ohio and sign up for your own page on mysteelhounds.com through ONE Site. The new feature is an online community where fans can interact with players, front office staff members and other fans from around the CHL.

***Don't forget that each and every Monday night is Hounds Happy Hour on ESPN Radio, 1240-The Fan. Join host Tim Sampsell as he wraps up the teams action from the previous week, takes a look ahead to the coming week and interviews some of the top names from the Hounds and around the CHL.
 

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RiverKings at Oklahoma City Preview

January 5

Memphis RiverKings (19-6-3, 41 pts, 1st NE Div) @ Oklahoma City Blazers (15-8-4, 34 pts, 2nd NW Div) 7:35

Radio: Sports 56 WHBQ (AM 560)

Webcast: riverkings.com

TV: chltv.com

RECENT SCORES

Friday, 12/29 RiverKings 6 Youngstown 5 SO

Tulsa 4 Oklahoma City 2

Saturday, 12/30 RiverKings 5 Youngstown 3

Rocky Mountain 3 Oklahoma City 2 SO

THE MATCH UP

The RiverKings and Blazers play for the fourth time this season and for the second time in Oklahoma City. The RiverKings are 2-0-1 in the season series with four more meetings after tonight. The last meeting was a 4-3 Memphis win at the DCC on 12/19. The only contest between the two teams so far at the Ford Center was won by the RiverKings 6-3 on 11/3. The Blazers enter the game tonight 1-4-2 in their last seven games and are 12 points behind Colorado in second place in the Northwest Division. The RiverKings are coming off two wins at Youngstown last weekend and currently lead the Steelhounds by five points in the Northeast Division. The Steelhounds picked up a 5-2 win at Rocky Mountain last night move back into second ahead of Bossier-Shreveport. Tonight's game marks the return of LW Brad Wanchulak after starting the season in Europe. The RiverKings activated Wanchulak earlier this week after Darrell Stoddard was granted leave by the CHL to attend to family matters. The RiverKings are 33-63-8 in the all-time series with the Blazers, 10-37-5 in Oklahoma City. Tonight's game is the 105th all-time meeting.

COMING UP

Saturday, January 6

Memphis RiverKings (18-6-3, 39 pts, 1st NE Div) @ Tulsa Oilers (11-10-4, 26 pts, 4th NE Div) 7:35

Radio: Sports 56 WHBQ (AM 560)

Webcast: riverkings.com

Sunday, January 7

Corpus Christi Rayz (14-12-5, 33 pts, 2nd SE Div) @ Memphis RiverKings (19-6-3, 41 pts, 1st NE Div) 5:05

Radio: Sports 56 WHBQ (AM 560)

Webcast: riverkings.com

TV: chltv.com

Promotion: Post Game Skate with Players

Featured Non-Profit: Bodine School

Tuesday, January 9

Tulsa Oilers (12-11-4, 28 pts, 4th NE Div) @ Memphis RiverKings (19-6-3, 41 pts, 1st NE Div) 7:05

Radio: Sports 56 WHBQ (AM 560)

Webcast: riverkings.com

TV: chltv.com

Promotion: First 1500 fans receive WMC TV Channel 5 RiverKings CheerStix

########################

A RiverKings game is even more fun when you come as a group. Groups of 15 or more save up to 30% on the box office rate, plus every person in the group receives a player mini bobblehead. Call 662-342-1755 for more information.

RiverKings Single-Game Tickets for all 2006-2007 home games are on sale now at the DeSoto Civic Center box office and at all TicketMaster locations and at ticketmaster.com.

UPCOMING PROMOTIONS: Sunday, January 7 --- Post Game Skate with Players; Tuesday, January 9 --- WMC TV Channel 5 CheerStix to first 1,500 fans; Friday, January 12 --- Cellular South Darrell Stoddard Mini Bobbleheads to first 1,500 fans; Post Game Skate; Friday, January 19 --- RiverKings Drawstring Backpacks to the first 1,500 fans; Post Game Skate

After every RiverKings home game, the party heads to the new Buffalo Wild Wings on Airways in Southaven, the official Post Game Hang-Out of the RiverKings.
 

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Youngstown Tops Rocky Mountain, 5-2

Broomfield, Colo. - With three unanswered goals in the second half of tonight's game, the Youngstown Steelhounds gave the Rocky Mountain Rage hockey team their first loss of 2007, by the score of 5-2 at the Broomfield Event Center. Forward Chip Dunleavy and defenseman Clay Plume scored the lone goals for Rocky Mountain and Rage goaltender Trevor Cunning posted 23 saves.

The Rage falls to 8-17-3 for fourth place in the northwest division while the Steelhounds improve to 15-8-6 for third place in the northeast division.

Youngstown's Stephen Margeson drew the first goal of the game at 12:02 on a shot from between the circles that trickled through the legs of Cunning. Although they were down by one early, the Rage jumped back to fight for the team's first three-game winning streak of the season. Dunleavy fired the puck in net off a rebound at 15:24 to tie the game at one goal a piece. But before celebration could end, Youngstown took back the lead just nine seconds later on a goal by Jeff Alcombrack.

Rocky Mountain wasted no time in the second period. Nick Warriner skated in the puck from center ice and passed it off to Clay Plume just outside the crease. He tipped it in net just 39 seconds in the second period to tie the game again.

By the end of the second, Steelhound Jeff Christian forced a Rage turnover at center ice and skated all alone for a short-handed goal at 15:09 to give Youngstown the lead once more going into the third period.

Youngstown kept Rocky Mountain to just two shots on goal in the third period. Chris Richards and Brad Patterson both earned unanswered powerplay goals for the Steelhounds boosting the team's powerplay record to 2 for 8 on the night, while the Rage went 0 for 5.

The Rage returns to action tomorrow (Jan. 5) when they host the Arizona Sundogs at the Broomfield Event Center the only time this season. Fans can listen online at Rocky Mountain Rage or over the radio live on AM Z560 with the pre-game show starting at 6:50 p.m.

Single game tickets for the next home game and every other Rage home game are on sale now with prices ranging from $15-$40 per seat. Tickets may be purchased online at broomfieldeventcenter.com: Home, by calling 303-410-TIXS, or at the Broomfield Event Center box office (11450 Broomfield Ln., Broomfield, 80021). Season tickets, mini-packs, and group plans are also available for the 2006-07 season by calling 303-439-RAGE. For more information, visit Rocky Mountain Rage
 
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