For the second time in program history, Texas A&M Ice Hockey took to the road to take on the Tigers of East Texas Baptist University in Shreveport, Louisiana. The first series between these two schools took place last year in Shreveport as the teams opened their seasons with a series split. On Friday, the game would start at 10 PM following a NAHL match-up between the Shreveport Mudbugs and the Amarillo Bulls. The Aggies fell behind early in the first until a slap-shot goal from junior Huston Svondrk would tie the game. Near the end of the frame, Svondrk would find freshman Adam Pipe at the back door for an easy tap-in for a 2-1 first intermission lead. Freshman Chris Wyse would increase the Aggie lead to two with a sneaky wrister to the bottom left corner, but ETBU would rattle off three straight goals to make it 4-3 at the end of two. Less than a minute into the third period, senior Garrett Finn tie the game and seemingly give A&M momentum, but a quick follow-up by ETBU would give them the lead and knock freshman netminder Joseph Reynolds from the game, bringing in sophomore Brydon Gillilan in relief. A scramble in front of the Aggie net and an empty netter with 26 seconds left would seal the deal for the Tigers as they secured the win on home ice in the early hours of Saturday morning, 7-4.
Saturday’s game would be a different story for the maroon and white as they scored first and turned up the physicality on the Tigers. After Svondrk found Pipe for the icebreaker, ETBU’s top scorer Skyler Spiller would cross check Pipe into the Aggie net and earn himself an ejection. Shortly thereafter, sophomore Jaren Panick would sweep home a loose puck to put the Aggies up by a pair. Then, both teams would get into a lot of penalty trouble, which would result in power play goals for both sides, the Aggie one coming from senior captain Gary Russell on an absolute snipe. Svondrk would add one more tally before the buzzer and the Ags would secure a 4-1 lead. Tigers would come out shooting in the middle frame as the A&M penalties started to mount up, leading to 2 power play goals for ETBU to cut the lead to one. But, Pipe and Finn would continue their high scoring weekends with a goal apiece from right in front of the ETBU net to put the lead back at three, 6-3. Tigers would score twice again to keep it interesting until Finn would score his third of the weekend on the power play and a clutch empty net goal from freshman Kyle Mills would send the Aggies into the winter break on the back of an 8-5 win. Brydon Gillilan would secure the win for A&M, their fifth in the last six games.
A&M will now look to finish the semester strong in the classroom as they prepare for the start of finals next week. After a well-deserved Holiday Break, they will hit the ice in El Paso to kick off a 6-game road trip through West Texas and Colorado on January 7th.