Mudbugs eye a little payback at undefeated Amarillo

TURNAROUND TIME: Logan Heroux (3) and the Shreveport Mudbugs take on undefeated Amarillo this weekend. (Photo by CHRISTI LANG, Journal Sports)

By ROY LANG III, Journal Sports

Three weeks ago, Sutton Murray was high atop George’s Pond at Hirsch Coliseum. Although the forward wasn’t on the ice when his Shreveport Mudbugs played the Amarillo Wranglers, he didn’t like what he saw.

“I was watching all the small things, (Amarillo) coming by the bench laughing at us, kind of bullying us,” Murray said.

Not only did the Wranglers take a 4-1 victory in the Mudbugs’ home opener Sept. 23, they took a shootout win the next night and paraded around The George like they owned the place.

“It’s not fuel for me, but I think all the guys believe we owe them,” said Murray, who recently scored his first goal in junior hockey.

This weekend offers an opportunity at redemption.

Shreveport and Amarillo begin a two-game set at the Budweiser Bull pen in west Texas on Friday.

“They are a good team, too, so it’s not going to be easy, but we’re going to give them the best game we can,” Murray said.

The Mudbugs (3-5-2) have won two of the four games since the defeats at the hands of the Wranglers, but Amarillo hasn’t played since. The Wranglers are still 6-0.

“We’re not happy,” Mudbugs forward Ryan Burke said. “We’re going to play with an edge, obviously. I hope we can take four points.”

With just three victories in the first 10 games, and a bevy of road games in the next two months, the Mudbugs will attempt to send Amarillo a message and prevent the teams at the top of the North American Hockey League’s South Division from getting a big head start like last season.

“We have to learn from the weekend against Amarillo and Odessa, even the win,” Mudbugs head coach Jason Campbell said. “We have to be a better hockey team. We have to have a chip on our shoulder and believe in what we’re doing here and that we are a good hockey team. We have to learn how to win tight hockey games.”

Bugs at Wranglers

Friday, Saturday, 7:15 p.m.

Budweiser Bull Pen, Amarillo, Texas

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