This weekend brought something to San Antonio we haven’t seen in a long long time; exciting and well played hockey by the home team. Sure, we saw this team play excellent on the road during the Rodeo Road Trip, but once they returned home, that magic disappeared. The Rampage dropped a 5-3 decision on Tuesday against Lake Erie, which saw the Monsters score three power play goals, two in an 18 second span of the second period.
Friday, a Charlotte team fighting for their playoff lives came to town and the Rampage sent them on their way with their tails tucked between their legs after a 5-2 win for the home team. The Rampage would jump out to a 4-0 lead midway though the second period on goals from four different players, including newly signed Tyler Barnes’ first pro goal. Barnes would add his second on a highlight reel goal in the third that I maintain is one of the top five individual effort goals in franchise history.
The Rampage would follow up Friday’s stellar performance with a shutdown defensive effort defeating the Monsters 3-0 on Saturday. Panthers prospect Connor Brickley, playing in just his third pro game, scored his first pro goal, Josh McFadden scored his first AHL goal, and Michael Houser stopped all 26 shots he faced to earn his first shutout at the AHL level.
Rampage fans saw a ton of “firsts” this weekend. While it’s hard to show up to games knowing your team is, for all intents and purposes, done for the season, seeing these firsts can make these end of season games seem much less meaningless.
San Antonio Rampage “Three Stars of the Week” for the week ending April 6th:
1st Star: Drew Shore (3GP 1G-4A-5pts 6 SOG +3)
This could very well be Drew’s sendoff to the NHL. Once again, Shore asserted himself as the best player on the ice for the Rampage, playing excellent hockey in all three zones and setting up 4 goals while adding one more for himself.
2nd Star: Tyler Barnes (2GP 2G-0A-2pts 5 SOG +1)
The undrafted free agent out of Wisconsin jumped right into the Rampage lineup and made an impact right away. In his first professional game, Barnes scored two goals and has seen time on the penalty kill and power play in his first two games.
3rd Star: Greg Rallo (2GP 1G-2A-3pts 7 SOG +3)
It’s good to see the captain on this list again. Rallo scored his first goal in 23 games on Saturday, essentially icing the game, and added two more assists. He’s had a ton of scoring chances but could never seem to capitalize. That goal was vintage Rallo and I hope he gets a few more in the last 5 games.
Honorable Mention: Josh McFadden (3GP 1G-1A-2Pts 3 SOG +3)
McFadden scored his first AHL goal on Saturday, following John McFarland’s rush to the net and depositing the puck into the gaping net. He’s seeing a ton of time on the power play and has been steadily improving defensively. These last couple of weeks could be a huge boost to his confidence for next season.
Three Stars Season Standings
T-1. Bobby Butler – 7
T-1. Vincent Trocheck – 6
T-2. Jacob Markstrom – 5
T-2. Drew Shore -5
T-3. Jed Ortmeyer – 4
T-4. Michael Houser – 3
T-4. Greg Rallo – 3
T-5. Garrett Wilson – 2
T-5. Jared Gomes – 2
T-5. Denny Urban – 2
T-5. Matt Gilroy – 2
T-5. Quinton Howden – 2
T-5. Joey Crabb – 2
T-5. John McFarland – 2
T-6. Steve Pinizzotto – 1
T-6. Dov-Grumet-Morris – 1
T-6. Jon Matsumoto – 1
T-6. Doug Janik – 1
T-6. Colby Robak – 1
T-6. Ryan Martindale – 1
T-6. Scott Clemmensen – 1
T-6. Tyler Barnes – 1