Saturday, November 02, 2002


It's not every night you can find fault with a seven goal performance. But against woeful Wichita, Austin departed from its usual focused style.

"It was a win," Bats defenseman Doug Johnson summarized. "But we're not going to get many wins playing like that."

If not for two softies that put Patrik Lovisek on the bench midway through the first, this one might have been an actual contest. Instead, the Bats kept building up a two goal lead on Stephen Wagner, then giving it away. This might have continued indefinitely, but time expired, so Austin took it 7-5.

Dan Price had a pair, including a from-the-belly scythe shot that dribbled around Lovisek. Mike Gaffney and Brett Seguin both had three-point nights (and were both minus-1). Kelly Smart continued his offensive resurgence, with a power-play goal and a pinpoint pass to set up Shawn Legault's first tally of the year. The Austin power play struck twice, doubling its season output.

"It was an ugly win - I hope we don't have many more like that," Austin coach Brent Hughes said. "A bunch of our guys got caught up trying to get points -- taking chances, making risky passes. We kept turning the puck over, and every time we did they got back in the game. [Scoring seven goals] does build confidence on the offensive side, and it was nice to see our power play work a little bit better, but we gave up five goals tonight after giving up five goals in the first four games. We've got to forget all about this game and play like we did at the beginning of the season."

New defenseman Scott McCallum looked rusty, but forward Mike Olynyk plugged right in, playing third-line and PK. He also got credit for the second assist on what was actually a Price-Tallaire give-and-go.

Peter-Emmanuel Brady got the start in goal. He performed like a rookie back-up making his debut -- let in some bad ones, stopped some tough ones, got himself a "W" and a video to study.

"Obviously he didn't have his best game, but I think he made some key saves," Hughes said. "First shot of his career, he faced a breakaway and made that save. He's feeling things out a little bit. And he didn't have a whole lot of defense in front of him."

"It was a learning experience," Brady said. "We won, and that's all that matters."

Several fans couldn't help but point out that on a three-in-three weekend, the back-up often plays on Sunday afternoon. But with former Bats assistant Ken McRae in town with Indy then (and a key division game on Saturday) tonight was Matt Barnes' breather.

"We're going to go hard," Hughes said of taking on the Ice. "Obviously Mac and I, we have a lot of the same traits as coaches and we definitely want to beat each other. There's a lot of pride at stake."

Tom Gomes scored twice for Wichita, while Todd Johnson, Jeff Petruic and Travis Clayton each had a goal and an assist.

More comments from Brady
On his name: "I'm from Quebec, and when I moved to B.C. they just called me Pete -- they figured that was my first name because they're not used to French names, like Jean-Sebastien or something. It got dropped in juniors, and I never said anything. But when I came down here, I knew about the Brady Bunch thing, so I figured I'd throw another name in there."

On the difference between college and the pros: "The guys are so smart here, there's no liabilities on the ice. Every player knows what they are supposed to do compared to college. And the speed -- every time you go up a league it elevates a notch."

That Corpus Christi-Laredo box score didn't go final 'til after midnight. Must have been the penalties. 10 goals, home team wins, seven fights -- could they market hockey to a new place any better?... So Laredo, Indy and El Paso have all won twice. That's really gotta bum out Wichita.

Hughes on the IceRays: "They've got an experienced coach who knows that defense wins hockey games. Part of the problem in the past with that hockey club was they thought offense would win it for them every night."

Shades of Dallas Anderson in Corpus Christi (and go figure, that worked out well for everyone).

The Houston Aeros are offering guaranteed fight nights this season. If I'm top goon for the opposition, I'm asking for a payoff.

Good bit about the Stars in Friday's Dallas Morning News: "Marty Turco, who had two giveaways that turned into goals Wednesday, received some good-natured ribbing from his teammates as he found a bungee cord in his locker Thursday morning and the nets placed in the corners, because that's where he always seems to be."

Are there still gonna be Iguanas fans picketing the Rampage opener?... And finally, Tulsa and Lubbock are the subjects of my latest CHL article for

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