Steele, Bugs Fend off Ice Wolves in Wild Victory

Feb 10, 2023

The Shreveport Mudbugs (22-13-6) got a big night from their Captain to lead the way to a resilient 5-4 victory over the New Mexico Ice Wolves at Outpost Ice Arenas Friday night.
After a scoreless opening frame, the second period had plenty of fireworks. It started off nicely as Hayden Nichol rattled home his ninth goal of the year from the deep right corner to give the Bugs a 1-0 edge just 57 seconds into the 2nd. Jake Mack earned the helper on the game’s first tally. SHV would add another at 2:47 as Captain Garrett Steele would slip in his team-leading 14th goal of the year by crashing the net to make it a 2-0 contest. Ryan Burke picked up the lone assist. NM responded as Sully Scholle shot in his 22nd goal of the year at 11:38 to make it a 2-1 contest. The Bugs would fire back as Kason Muscutt raced through the middle of the ice and put a shot on net which produced a rebound in front and was shoveled home by him for his sixth tally to push the SHV lead to 3-1 at 12:52. The Ice Wolves came back w/ a pair of goals from Will Howard and Ryan Johnson at 17:45 and 19:03 respectively to knot the score up, 3-3.
New Mexico would take their first lead of the night at 9:03 when Jack Dalton would ring in a flukey goal to give the home squad a 4-3 lead. The lead wouldn’t last long as SHV responded yet again just 54 seconds later at 9:57 when Eric Vitale crashed the net and knocked in his 10th goal of the year to even the score, 4-4. Ryan Austin and Alex Park earned the assists. Then amazingly enough, it was just 40 seconds later when Steele struck again in front as he rifled home his 15th goal of the year to give the Bugs a 5-4 lead at 10:37. Muscutt made the brilliant cross-ice pass to earn the primary assist on the go-ahead goal. SHV then survived one last furious surge from New Mexico to win 5-4.
Simon Bucheler earned his 16th win in net making 30 saves on the night.

SHV and NM will conclude their two-game series tomorrow night. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:30 CT from Outpost Ice Arenas.