Friday, December 3, 2010

Gameday Preview: Stars v. San Antonio Rampage

Texas Stars
13-8-0-0, 26 pts
#6 West Division
v.San Antonio Rampage
15-6-1-0, 31 pts
#1 West Division
December 3rd at 7:30 PM
Cedar Park Center, Cedar Park, TX

The San Antonio Rampage return to the Cedar Park Center for the 3rd time this season and the 4th game on the season series overall. Despite the Rampage holding the first place spot in the West Division, Texas has had San Antonio's number this season, going 3-0-0-0 so far with a combined score of 13-6.

San Antonio comes into tonight's game on a two-game losing streak which started last week when Texas defeated the Rampage in Cedar Park 5-2. On Sunday, Milwaukee traveled to San Antonio and also put up 5 on the Rampage en route to a 5-3 victory. Texas is on a two game winning streak themselves which started with the same San Antonio game last week. Both teams are 7-3-0-0 in their last ten, however.

So if the Stars are so hot, why are they in 6th place in the West? Well, for one the Stars have played the fewest games in the Western Conference at 21. Additionally, it's early in the season and the point spread between #1 and #6 is not all that wide, only 5 points.

If we were to rank the West Division by points percentage, things would shake out a little differently with the order being Rampage, Rivermen, Admirals and Stars. (The Barons would also have a good enough points percentage to jump over to the North Division and play there in the postseason, but that's not relevant at the moment.)

Matt Climie has started all 3 games against the Stars so far, allowing at least 3 goals in each game. Al Montoya is not Climie's backup, as it seems to be more of a 1/1A situation. He could start against the Stars tonight, but perhaps San Antonio sees something in Climie starting against his former team in terms of motivation and familiarity. It hasn't worked out so far though for the club.

Texas's top goaltender is coming off a great month. In November, Bachman went 6-1--0 with a 1.62 GAA and .941 SV%. Bachman has had 8 starts in the Stars last 9 games coming into tonight. The rookie feels ready for whatever the team needs from him thanks to excellent off-season conditioning. "If I need to play, I need to play," said Bachman. "Conditioning-wise, I feel fine."

Stars injury/call up report:
Krahn (day-to-day, lower body)
McCulloch, Roman (unspecified injury)

Website: sarampage.com
Blog (unofficial): Rampage with Tony U.
Twitter: @SARampage
Twitter: @SARampage_Voice (play-by-play for SA)

2 comments:

  1. San Antonio is also short one of their better forwards, as Tim Stapleton signed with the Thrashers.

    Stephen do you know if anyone- whether someone in the AHL or within the Stars organization- keeps track of the smaller stats, like face-offs? These things don't seem to appear anywhere.

    ReplyDelete
  2. A lot of these stats are kept, but not published. I sit next to the shot counter during games in the press box and he has to count everything: misses, blocks, whether it was PP, EV, SH. None of those stats make it out to the wider audience though and I don't know why not.

    ReplyDelete

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