Photo by Steven Christy
The San Antonio Rampage, a formidable adversary, have had a decent head-to-head season against the Oklahoma City Barons. Owning them at home and on the road, the Rampage are needing standing points to keep fellow West Division club, the Texas Stars, from overtaking them in the playoff standings. In addition to Texas, Hamilton and Milwaukee are making plays to topple the Rampage in the coming weeks, so San Antonio looks to strike now, and against a team they know they can beat.
A bit of a shuffle has occurred with the Rampage starting roster, but they own a system of highly-pressurized and pesky offense, and thus have kept themselves composed through call-ups. Likewise they are strong in the net, and when this team gets a full head of steam you better be prepared.
The Oklahoma City Barons would split the weekend games against the Rampage at home in the Cox Center. This has become a typical thing that OKC does – that is trade victories and look vastly different in both games.
The Barons number one goaltender, Laurent Brossoit, would allow a goal in the first ninety seconds of the opening period of the first game. It felt raw until Brad Hunt delivered a whale of a shot to tie the game three minutes later. Two early power play attempts by both squads proved fortuitous more than potent, and we would end the first period with a one goal-a-piece tie.
The second period gave us one goal by the Rampage, and they appeared to have the bulk of the mojo in the second frame. The Barons would have a couple of bad penalties fall their way, but were able to kill penalties quickly.
With only a solitary goal scored in the second period, the Barons would again allow an early period goal, and this one would hurt the most. In the opening minute of the third period, Brossoit again struggled to stop a Shane O’Brien goal (he would have a heckuva night), and the Barons would now have to dig themselves out of a two-goal deficit. They worked hard, and it paid off when Bogdan Yakimov brought his team within one on the only power play goal by either team on the evening. A full fifteen minutes later the Barons were forced to pull the goaltender, but were unable to capitalize. The Rampage would score an empty netter, and OKC would lose game number one by a score of 4-2.
The second game forced OKC to combat the sluggish start that happened the night before with a little wizardry. The Barons scored three straight goals in the second period with another in the third period to put the cherry on top of this delicious sundae.
The Barons won a whale of a game against a frustrated and tired San Antonio team. Laurent Brossoit posted his second shutout of the season en route to a 4-0 demonstrative victory for OKC.
Oklahoma City Barons Lineup (both nights the same):
K. Jones-Khaira-C. Jones
Scratches: Steve Pinizzotto, Kale Kessy & Kellan Lain (injured); Chase Schaber (healthy)