The San Antonio Rampage got the new year off on the wrong foot by dropping back-to-back tilts against the Oklahoma City Barons this weekend. The Barons took the first game in Texas by a 5-2 count, and then returned home to beat the Rampage again, 5-3. San Antonio has now lost three straight games and seven of their last eight.
In Friday's game in San Antonio, Oklahoma City went 3 for 7 on the power play and goaltender Chet Pickard stopped 33 shots to lead the Barons to the 5-2 victory. Rampage defender Ryan Whitney opened the scoring with a power-play goal at the 10:15 mark of the first period. Vincent Trocheck and Bobby Butler were credited with the assists. The Barons evened the game just over four minutes later, when Roman Horak scored on an OKC power play. In the second period, Derek Nesbitt and Taylor Fedun netted power-play goals to give the Barons a 3-1 lead. Wade Megan tallied early in the third period from Matt Gilroy and Garrett Wilson to cut the deficit to one. C.J. Stretch put the game away with an even-strength marker almost two minutes later and Matthew Ford completed the scoring with an empty-net goal with thirty-three seconds remaining in regulation. Jacob Markstrom took the loss for San Antonio. The Alien finished the game with 31 saves.
On Saturday, the Barons roared back from 3-0 second period deficit to win 5-3 in Oklahoma City. Jed Ortmeyer scored from Joey Crabb to give San Antonio a 1-0 after one. Wade Megan lit the lamp at 2:36 of the second, with assists going to Garrett Wilson and John Lee. Matt Gilroy notched his second goal of the AHL season from Ortmeyer to make it 3-0 six minutes later. The three-goal advantage would last only thirty-one seconds when Curtis Hamilton beat Jacob Markstrom to start the OKC comeback. Martin Gernat notched his first of the season to cut San Antonio's lead to 3-2 before the end of the frame. In the third period, Derek Nesbitt tied the game, Anton Lander potted the eventual winner to give the Barons the lead, and Gernat scored again to ice the game. The three-goal barrage came in a frantic seventy-three second span. Richard Bachman made 28 saves to post the win, while Markstrom stopped 35 shots in the losing effort. Markstrom's record slipped to 5-8-1 on the season.
San Antonio (12-20-0-3) has two home games this week against the Abbotsford Heat. The first of the two is on Tuesday with the teams meeting again on Saturday night.
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