By Sgt. Nathaniel Foster, 75th Fires Brigade PAONovember 23, 2011
Wichita Falls, Texas -The Wichita Falls Wildcats hockey team, which regularly brings in more than 4,000 fans, had a record crowd as the Wildcats held their annual Military Appreciation night at Kay Yeager Coliseum Saturday. Several hundred Soldiers, Airman and Marines from Fort Sill and the surrounding area were on hand for the Wildcats 2-0 win over the Corpus Christi Ice Rays.
The Wildcats annually pay tribute to men and women in uniform, both those presently serving and those who served in the past. This year, the team invited members of the military and their families to enjoy a free game.
Fort Sill's 75th Fires Brigade brought a large contingent across the Red River to take in the game. The Soldiers got a warm reception -- one which their leaders said they will cherish for years.
Even though Saturday night's game was held in honor of the military, the rough stuff was common throughout, including two fights. Adam Barlow traded blows with Seth Blair in the second period, while Zach Pochiro threw down with Phil Pietroniro in the third. While the hitting was significant throughout, the penalties were few and far between, with only two power plays between the teams.
The Wildcats lived up to their reputation as Matt Leon, the goalie for the Wildcats, went a perfect 29 of 29 for the night. Brad Shumway's goal would be enough, but the Wildcats added other score in the third as Nathan Chasteen picked up a goal to go with his assist.
The intermission entertainment included a hockey game showdown between the Army and Air Force, followed by a special show by the Wildcats' mascot.