Gameday Preview: Texas Stars v. San Antonio Rampage

Texas Stars
36-29-4-4, 80 pts
#6 Central Division
v.San Antonio Rampage
29-37-6-1, 65 pts
#8 Central Division
April 10th at 7:00 PM
H-E-B Center at Cedar Park, Cedar Park, TX

It's the final week of the AHL regular season, and the Texas Stars have three huge tilts against the San Antonio Rampage on the docket. The Stars are coming off a rather successful two games against the Rockford IceHogs to give them more than a puncher's chance at the playoffs.

"That’s a big weekend for us, three out of four points," said head coach Derek Laxdal on Saturay. "It’s in our own hands. We’ve got San Antonio coming in on Wednesday trying to play the spoiler role."

(credit: Andy Nietupski)
Texas received a gift on Saturday in the reassignment of Joel L'Esperance. Providing some much needed punch down the middle with Travis Morin on the shelf, the AHL Rookie of the Year candidate netted the first goal in Saturday's game against Rockford to help the Stars pick up the point.

"Any point is huge at this point in the year," he said. "We’re battling for a playoff spot so I try to do what I can to help them."

What also helps is that the Stars are 7-4-0-0 against the Rampage this season. By our calculations, the Stars will need to take at least five out of the six available points and get help this week to get the playoff spot. Rest assured, you're going to see the Stars fight harder than they have all season.

"I think we’ve just got to go in with the mindset we're going to win. If we go in with that confidence and swagger, it’ll help us in those three games."

Laxdal added, "We just have to have the same effort [from Saturday]. We get this same effort Wednesday night we’ll have a good chance."

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