Sunday, April 10, 2011

Gameday Preview: Stars at San Antonio Rampage

Texas Stars
41-28-4-6, 92 pts
#3 West Division
atSan Antonio Rampage
39-33-4-3, 85 pts
#7 West Division
April 10th at 4:30 PM
AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX

Around the midpoint of the season, the prevailing thought was that the West Division playoff race was going to come down to the very last day. We were close. Last night's game against Oklahoma City decided the last playoff spot in the AHL and certainly put an unwelcome damper on the last home game for the San Antonio Rampage, who will not be going to the postseason.

After leading the conference in points for much of the year, San Antonio dropped off the radar in the second half of the season and fell all the way to 7th in the standings, which is where they will finish. Surely the Rampage know that their 3-3-3-0 record against Texas this year could not have helped matters.

"It's pride for everybody," said Aaron Gagnon. "It's the last game of the season and no one wants to just go through the motions."

Former Star Matt Climie has taken the lionshare of the starts against Texas this season, garnering a 3-4-0 record with a 2.89 GAA and .910 SV%. Joe Fallon started for the Rampage last night in Chicago after Climie let seven past him in OKC on Friday.

With Richard Bachman taking the past two starts, it would only make sense for Tyler Beskorowany to get one more start before the playoffs start and Bachman takes over. Expect again to see some players resting and ATOs and callups like Embach, Schultz, Glennie and Monast in the lineup.

As to the Stars' first round playoff matchup, I would point you to Ryan Aber's rundown on NewsOK. Since the Stars and Barons' fates are intertwined, he covers all of the possibilities for Texas as well as OKC. The Stars will announce the schedule for playoff games on Sunday night after the dust settles from the end of the season.

Stars injury/call up report:
Ludwig (lower body)
Vincour, Segal, Lukowich (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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