Gameday Preview: Texas Stars v. San Diego Gulls, Game 2

Texas Stars
40-25-8-3, 91 pts, 0.599
#3 Pacific Division
v.San Diego Gulls
39-23-4-2, 84 pts, 0.618
#2 Pacific Division
Gulls lead 1-0

April 23rd at 7:00 PM
H-E-B Center at Cedar Park, Cedar Park, TX

UPDATE: Ritchie in, Campbell starts.

It basically goes without saying that Texas needs this one badly. Thursday's game felt similar to last year's playoff opener as the Gulls stymied the powerful Texas power play, holding them without a single shot in the contest. Last year, Rockford dominated Texas with a stifling PK and swept the series.

With games three to five all in San Diego, you've got to win at least one at home to have a chance. Otherwise you have to play perfect hockey on the road. Both teams have excellent road records, but clearly the home record was better. San Diego is playing .647 hockey in the Valley View Casino Center. All other things equal, that means they win two of three in their barn. You've gotta win this one tonight.

(Credit: Christina Shapiro)
The Stars will look to do that with the potential addition of Brett Ritchie to the lineup. Ritchie was a surprising scratch for Texas. After being sent down before Game 1, presumably after returning to health, he was scratched with injury Thursday. If the Stars get him back, he could make a big difference on the aforementioned PP.

Texas could also be without Greg Rallo, who was injured in Game 1 and will be re-evaluated for Game 2.

Stars injury/call up report:
Shore, Ully, Troock (injury, out for season)
Ritchie (injury, lower body)
Rallo (injury, lower body)

Gulls Web Resources:
Twitter: @SDGullsAHL
Twitter: @619sports (PBP)
Twitter: @danarelAHL