Friday, January 7, 2011

Gameday Preview: Stars at San Antonio Rampage

Texas Stars
21-11-2-2, 46 pts
#4 West Division
atSan Antonio Rampage
23-13-1-0, 47 pts
#3 West Division
January 7th at 7:00 PM
AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX

The Texas Stars have yet to suit up for a game in 2011 so far, but that will change tonight in San Antonio against the familiar Rampage. While Texas was idle, the West Division continued to play around them. Peoria picked up two wins to claim the first spot in the standings while the Rampage are currently on a four game losing streak, meaning the Stars still trail them by one point. Milwaukee crushed the Griffins last night to earn second place. If Texas wins tonight, it has the opportunity to surpass the Rampage in the standings for the first time all season and tie Milwaukee for 2nd.

Texas holds a 4-0-0-1 record against the Rampage this season and is riding a seven game point streak dating back to the Stars' last game against San Antonio on December 17th. That evening, Richard Bachman returned from his stint in Dallas to backstop the Stars to a 3-0 shutout victory at the AT&T Center. Since then, Bachman has started five of Texas's six games, allowing three goals on four occasions but coming out with a 3-1-1 record thanks to Texas' offensive support. The Stars are averaging 3.29 goals per game during their current point streak, which has pushed them close to three goals per game on the season, currently sitting at 2.97.

Fabian Brunnstrom is finally finding his offensive touch as well, with a 3 game goal streak currently. Travis Morin is a point-a-game player against the Rampage this season, with 2 goals and 3 assists in the 5 games played. Wathier, Rallo and Larsen all have 4 points in the 5 games played. Scott McCulloch, who has only played in two games against the Rampage, has four points.

Former Star Matt Climie will be available for tonight's game, despite a visit to Phoenix with the Coyotes last night. Climie has started 4 of the 5 games against the Stars this year, going 1-3-0 with a 2.95 GAA. Joe Fallon, currently with the ECHL's Las Vegas Wranglers, started the remaining game. Richard Bachman must love playing these Rampage because his stats are fantastic against them. The AHL rookie sports a 0.97 GAA and .968 SV% against the club in 3 games played.

The Stars will be without Philip Larsen tonight, one of the leading scorers against the Rampage. Larsen has been called up to Dallas to play tonight against the Rangers and possibly Sunday against the Wild.

Stars injury/call up report:
Krahn (lower body)
McCulloch (upper body)
Blindenbacher, Stephenson (undisclosed)
Larsen (call up)

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

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