Friday, March 18, 2011

Gameday Preview: Stars at Manitoba Moose

Texas Stars
35-23-4-6, 80 pts
#4 West Division
atManitoba Moose
37-26-1-5, 80 pts
#1 North Division
March 18th at 7:30 PM
MTS Centre, Winnipeg, MB

Last month, the Stars went on an eight game road trip and we all thought that was bad. The Manitoba Moose are on their third game of a homestand after going on an eleven game road trip. Going 7-4, the Moose pushed to the top of the North Division with 80 points, the same as the Stars. The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, the best team in the league, came in and beat up the Moose Wednesday and Thursday to set them on a three game losing streak. The Moose are 1-5 in their last six games at home.

Texas meanwhile won their last game after going on a three game winless streak. With the division moving around them this week, Texas has slipped to 4th in the West in both points and points percentage. Including tonight's game, the Stars will have 12 games remaining in the season. The current target to make it into the playoffs is 94 points, which leaves Texas with 14 more points needed.

The season series between the two teams is tied at one a piece as the Stars will finish things out with the Moose this weekend. Leading scorers for the Stars in the season series include Greg Rallo, Sean Backman, Cody Chupp and Francis Wathier. Their roles will be all that much more important with Brandon Segal being recalled to Dallas yesterday. Segal had 7 goals and 10 assists in 30 games for Texas. He had a solid February with 11 points in 14 games but cooled off in March with no points and a minus-2 in his last four games.

Also joining Texas in Manitoba is new signee Mike Embach. The forward may not see ice time as readily as last year's ATO signees, Tyler Ludwig and Cody Chupp, with the Stars' playoff spot not being as secure.

Stars injury/call up report:
Segal, Vincour (call up)

Website: moosehockey.com
Twitter: @ManitobaMoose
Newspaper: Winnipeg Free Press

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