The Titans fell to the Austin Bruins earlier today by the score of 4 – 1 in a hard-fought battle that really wasn’t sealed until the last minute of the game. The margin of victory does not indicate the effort, hustle, and closeness of this contest.
Austin opened the scoring just thirty-five seconds into the game. The Bruins’ Carson Riddle picked up the loose puck behind the Titans net and made a centering pass out front to Sutter Muzzatti in the slot. Muzzatti, who was being knocked off the puck by Jack Karlsson, was able to make a backdoor pass to Dylan Gajewski who one-timed it into the open net past Titans netminder Ben Charette for the 1 – 0 lead.
After the early goal, there was a significant amount of clean checking and opportunities for both teams. Then the Titans’ Tyler Sanborn received a double minor with 1:07 remaining in the second period. Twenty seconds later, Austin went up 2 – 0. The Bruins’ Alex Trombley set up the play just inside the far side faceoff circle and he passed it over to Marian Haborak on his right. Haborak took a one-timer that was saved by Charette, but Jens Richards pushed the puck past Charette for it fourth goal of the season.
While shorthanded, the Bruins were pressuring inside the Titans zone and the puck went to the far side half wall where it was picked up by Austin’s Sutter Muzzatti. Muzzatti made a centering pass out front to Riddle who took a wrist shot that beat Charette long side to make it a 3 – 0 game at 6:18 into the third.
Three minutes later, the Titans got on the board. With the Bruins trying to break out of their own zone, forward Isaak Brassard has the puck at the top of the far side half wall and went to make a cross-ice pass that was blocked by Rocco Testa-Basi. The puck bounced off Testa-Basi’s skate and directly to Brandon Avezov who skated towards the net on a two – on- none with Testa-Basi. As Avezov reach the net, he made a cross crease pass to Testa-Basi who lifted the puck up and over the Bruins’ fallen netminder Nikola Goich to bring the Titans within two.
The Bruins closed out the scoring with a powerplay goal with fifty-five seconds remaining to make it a 4 1 game.
Charette stopped 34 of 38 shots by Goich turned aside 12 of 13 shots. Click here for the box score.
The Titans will close out the league’s annual showcase tomorrow at 1:45 PM ET against the Wichita Falls Warriors.