Gameday Preview: Texas Stars at San Antonio Rampage

Texas Stars
36-30-4-4, 80 pts
#6 Central Division
atSan Antonio Rampage
30-37-6-1, 67 pts
#8 Central Division
April 12th at 7:30 PM
AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX

In case you were wondering if the pressure was getting to the Texas Stars on Wednesday night against the Rampage, think again. The Stars have been in this mode for the past three weeks now.

"Our guys have done a pretty good job of handling it down the stretch, especially with the young group that we have," said head coach Derek Laxdal. "You play a team that’s out of the playoffs [in San Antonio], they have nothing to lose. As the game went along, I thought we pressed in the third and couldn’t generate. Give them credit. They did a pretty good job of shutting it down."

(credit: Andy Nietupski)
A couple of bad bounces and the puck was in the back of the Texas net. That's hockey. As much as Wednesday's loss stung, this is no time for the Stars to wallow in their woes, and that was the message coming out of the leadership group on Wednesday.

"Looking back, it’s a hard lesson to learn right now, but as a young team we can take lessons and it’ll help us in the long run," said Joel Hanley. "We got a game on Friday so we’re just going to focus on that right now."

Enough has been written about the Rampage this season, considering the Stars have now played them twelve times. They know what they're going to get when they head south on I-35, and it's on the Stars to give themselves a chance at the postseason with a couple of wins over the weekend. Should they fail to collect at least one point on Friday, it's all over.

Laxdal was realistic with his optimism: "We’re not out of it. We gotta pick ourselves up. It’s not looking good. But we’ve gotta pick ourselves up and get ready for Friday and go from there. We [needed] three in a row to get in. Now we have to win two to give ourselves a look with some help."

The puck drops at 7:30 CDT. 

Stars injury/call up report:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Laberge (upper body)
Morin (upper body)
Cecconi (undisclosed)
Dowling, Bow (call up)