Gameday Preview: Texas Stars v. San Antonio Rampage

Texas Stars
39-25-7-3, 88 pts, 0.595
#3 Pacific Division
v.San Antonio Rampage
32-34-8-0, 72 pts, 0.486
#7 Pacific Division
April 13th at 7:30 PM
Cedar Park Center, Cedar Park, TX

Even though Texas has a playoff spot locked up and knows it will play San Diego, there is still the matter of home ice to decide. As I wrote Monday, the Stars are likely to start the series at home with a 2-3 sequence seeing them in the lower seed. However, if Texas defeats San Antonio and Manitoba this week and San Diego falls to Ontario twice, the Stars will leapfrog the Gulls for home ice. The series would start on the road in southern California, likely late next week.

In order to even have a chance to get there, Texas needs four points out of this week. Tonight's opponent is the most familiar on the schedule. This final matchup with the Rampage will be the 14th meeting between the teams this season. Texas holds the season series advantage at 7-5-1 coming in. Despite the Rampage's high then low season, the two clubs have split the games pretty evenly throughout the entire season with no team dominating for any long stretch. The Stars won three in a row in the midseason.

(Credit: Christina Shapiro/Texas Stars)
The Rampage still have a shot to move up out of last place in the Pacific with two games remaining. The team will surely rely on Mikko Rantanen, who is now back from call-up in Colorado. He has 16 points in just eight games in the season series. Joey Hishon also has 16 points but used 12 games to acquire them.

Stars injury/call up report:
Faksa, Ritchie, Johns (call up)
Shore, Ully, Troock (injury)
Smith (questionable, illness)

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