PREVIEW: Taking on the RampageBy: Colin Peterson | Published: October 19th 2018
Oct. 19, 2018 vs SAN ANTONIO RAMPAGE
The Manitoba Moose (1-3-0-0) continue their four-game home stand tonight against the San Antonio Rampage (1-3-0-0). Puck drop is slated for 7 p.m CT, and you can still get tickets at moosehockey.com/tickets/. You can also tune in to TSN 1290, moosehockey.com/listenlive/ or the Moose App for the action.
The Moose took three of four matches against the Rampage last season, outscoring them 15-9 in the process. Mason Appleton caused San Antonio fits in the four meetings, registering at least a point in each and totaling seven points (4G, 3A). Appleton and defenceman Sami Niku both enter tonight’s game on two-game point streaks.
The Moose franchise has a 28-13-2-5 record all-time against the Rampage, but because of the AHL’s realignment the past off-season, play San Antonio as Central Division rivals for the first time. They’ll meet six more times this season, meaning the teams will be much more familiar by playoff time. One player who needs no introduction to the Rampage is Moose centre Felix Girard. The Lévis, QC native played 114 games (19G, 19A) with San Antonio during the past two seasons.
Manitoba spent a long practice week at Bell MTS Iceplex with a focus on game situations, transitions, and the forecheck. The extra time also helped some players manage their health. Logan Stanley has been out of the lineup since blocking a shot in the first game of the season. The Jets first round pick (18th overall, 2016) has been full participant throughout the week, however, and says the tone at practice is paying dividends.
“I think that’s the kind of stuff I need to get ready, and I think everyone kinda needs that still early in the season to stay in game mode and get your rhythm. And, our practices have been good and high-intensity and I think we’re getting better.”
On the offensive side, the Moose have room for improvement on the offensive side of the puck with just six goals over four appearances. Seth Griffith knows he’s expected to be a big part of Manitoba’s attack this season. In the first game against Belleville (Friday, Oct. 12) Griffith registered both his first goal and his first assist with the Moose. He said that while he hopes the numbers come his focus is on being an impact player every night.
“You’re counted on to do that night-in and night-out, so I try and do that. I try and bring (offence), and you know you’re not going to have it every night. Nobody does. So I think the important thing is when you don’t have those nights, you bring something else to the table. Whether it’s getting pucks in deep, working hard or getting on the forecheck. That’s what I really have to work on when I’m not getting the bounces and stuff like that – making sure I’m doing those things.”
Don’t forget to visit moosehockey.com/tickets to watch tonight’s action, or to snag your tickets for the rematch on Sunday.
The 2 p.m. CT matinee on Sunday is also Manitoba Moose Pride Day. There will be specialty t-shirts and posters available for purchase and a game-used stick auction, with the proceeds supporting Rainbow Resource Centre. Stop by the 6 Degrees Photobooth Co. on the concourse for some fun photos. The national anthem on Sunday will be performed by Rainbow Harmony. Visit moosehockey.com for more information.