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From the Rampage Desk: Week 19 - Rodeo Road Trip part 3

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Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

The beloved Rampage move on to California, their 3rd state so far on the month long odyssey away from the AT&T Center. This afternoon will find them in San Jose for the final time this season and tomorrow evening they will be in Stockton.

News

Mason Geertsen was called up on Wednesday but returned to the Komets on Thursday.

Need a valentine for your favorite Rampage fan? Well look no further:

Injury Report

Nikita Zadorov remains day-to-day with LBI but with Mason being sent back to Ft Wayne there's hope he's able to play this weekend

Reid Petryk took a puck in the leg late in Wednesday's game and did not return to the ice. No updates since.

Duncan Siemens had a vicious collision in Monday's game and left on a stretcher. He was released from the hospital early the next day and was at the rink Wednesday wearing a neck brace, sore but in good spirits. He flew back to San Antonio when the team went to California but they left things open saying he was there "for this leg of the trip". His status right now is "out indefinitely".

Ben Street had his meeting with the Avs medical staff on Tuesday, no word so far on if he was given the green light to practice again.

Andrew Agozzino is back skating with the team in a NC jersey. Hurry!

Komets

Ft Wayne lost to Evansville in OT 3-2 on Tuesday and fell 6-5 to Cincinnati last night.

Trevor Cheek had a goal against Evansville with Bourke and Belzile assisting

Last night Cheek had a goal and an assist, Belzile had a goal and Bourke 2 assists

All 3 of these guys are over a pt/gm in the ECHL this season.

Garrett Meurs was put on reserve yesterday to make room for Kyle Thomas.

Justin Cohn had a nice look at how the Rampage players are fitting in Ft Wayne

Recap: Charlotte

A game like Monday’s just leaves you scratching your head. The Rampage committed 11 penalties only had 19 SOG and yet won 5-2. They scored 3 goals on the PP and an empty netter, at even strength this game was a 1-0 victory for SA. Mikko continued his fantastic rookie season with 2 goals and now has 16G/23A putting him 8th in the AHL. Dennis Everberg had a goal and assist as did Borna Rendulic, Joey Hishon had 4 assists, Max Noreau had 3 assists, Roman Will stopped 31/33.

For the second game in a row an injury to a defenseman leaves a lasting impression. Duncan Siemens suffered a head injury late in the game and left on a stretcher.

The Rampage celebrated their 50th game with a second straight win over the Checkers. This was a gritty one, Charlotte scored 1st but Mikko answered with a power goal off a Sam Henley shot. Charlotte scored again but the Rampage answered on the PP with a Max Noreau score set up by, you guessed it, Rantanen. Marc-Andre Cliche put SA up 3-2 early in the 2nd and they held on from there in a grindy but quick final 35 minutes.

The defense looked terrifying on paper but aside from the ineffective top pairing of Gormley & Clark they played a solid game. Justin Hamonic made his Rampage and AHL debut and was a pleasant surprise. Back in rookie camp his skating and puck skills elicited groans from onlookers but time in Ft Wayne has had positive effects. Other than when I was actively looking for him I didn’t notice him at all, which is exactly what you want from a guy like that. The Gormley/Clark pair is becoming a recurring nightmare of turnovers and inability to clear the puck. I realize the Avs would probably love to move Gormley towards the deadline but it’s becoming obvious that he’s not showing well given big minutes. The team had some time to get in a solid practice on Friday, I hope they gave some thought to mixing the defense up a bit.

Preview: Barracuda/Heat

The way the percentages stand right now, a 16-10-0 record down the stretch would get the Rampage into the Calder Cup playoffs, believe it or not. I have a feeling that's going to rise a bit but even in 6th place there's still a reasonable shot at it. This weekend and then again week after next are chock full of divisional contests, 6 in all. If they can run those they'll be right back in the top-4 in the Pacific. Add Aggz and Street for the final 16-18 games and things can really change.

The Rampage and Barracuda have squared off 4 times so far, splitting series both at home and on the road. Oddly enough, we've also seen Stockton 4 times and gone 2-2.

Lines/Pairs from Wednesday:

Evs – Hish – Mikko
Draz – Smitty – Pete
Thompson – Clish – Borna
Schumi – Big Sam – Bordy

Gormley – Clark
Hubie – Max
Corbs - Hamonic

Roman
Marty

Scratched: Mason, Mags
Injured: Duncan, Z, Aggz

Getting Big Z back would be a big help to the Rampage's struggling defense. Although they've been letting in only 2.5 goals per game over the last 10, a lot of that is on Roman Will and improved play by the forward corps. What started out as the solid foundation in the beginning of the year has become troublesome lately. Aside from Mikko's scorching hot play lately, Dennis Everberg, Reid Petryk, Joey Hishon and Borna Rendulic are producing some nice numbers as well. The lines seem a lot more balanced lately and having 3 that can score goals takes pressure off the top line.

Schedule

Saturday afternoon at San Jose 4:15 in the ET

Sunday evening at Stockton 7pm in the ET

All games on Ticket 760

Links

Stats

Standings

Preview

Next up

The homecoming we've been waiting for, the Rampage head home to repack their suitcases then on to Cleveland to play the Monsters on Friday and Saturday nights.

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Neither game conflicts with the Avs so stop by and support your prospects. Enjoy!