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The San Antonio Rampage dropped a 7-2 decision to the Manitoba Moose on Saturday night in front of a sold-out crowd of 7,446 fans at the AT&T Center. The Rampage claim a 36-25-3-0 record good for 75 points.
Manitoba took a 1-0 lead as former Rampage player Garth Murray redirected Aaron Volpatti’s pass from the right goal line to the low glove side of San Antonio netminder Matt Clime 7:33 after the initial puck drop.
The Moose extended their lead to 2-0 after center Cody Hodgson was credited with a goal at the 8:42 mark of the first period. The puck was flipped into the air above the Rampage net as Climie attempted to swat it away but the rubber fell straight down just over the goal line.
After allowing two goals within the opening nine minutes of the contest, Rampage head coach Ray Edwards substituted Climie for back-up goaltender Joe Fallon.
San Antonio defenseman Jeff May recorded his first goal of the season at the 15:30 mark of the opening frame to cut the deficit in half to 2-1. Matt Pope’s shot from the point bounced off of Manitoba goalie Eddie Lack and out to May at the right circle where he was positioned to punch the puck into the right side of the net. Viktor Tikhonov provided the second assist.
The Moose pushed their lead to 3-1 when Fallon redirected Yann Sauve’s shot above the crease where left wing Shawn Weller backhanded the puck over Fallon’s left shoulder just underneath the cross bar 4:20 into the second period.
Manitoba claimed a 4-1 advantage at the 5:59 mark of the middle stanza as Hodgson centered a pass from the left wing boards to Bill Sweatt who fired a bullet from the high slot that went over Fallon’s glove.
The Moose took a 5-1 lead when center Alexandre Bolduc scored during a four-on-four situation 15:41 into the second period. Sergei Shirokov snapped a shot from the left side of the crease that was blocked by an outstretched May, however, Shirokov picked up his own rebound and sent it across the crease where Bolduc was positioned to fire a shot that escaped Fallon’s glove and slid just over the goal line into the lower left corner of the net.
Manitoba scored in the opening 1:30 of the third period as Sweatt registered his second goal of the night when he shot the puck high stick side past Fallon from the right faceoff circle for a 6-1 score.
Moose defenseman Keith Connauton increased the Manitoba lead to 7-1 as he skated down the left wing boards and fired a bullet from the left faceoff dot that went over Fallon’s right shoulder 13:10 into the final frame.
San Antonio cut the Manitoba lead to 7-2 when center Randy Robitaille, who was camped out in front of the crease, tapped the puck into the lower left corner of the net with a little more than four minutes remaining in the game.
Climie and Fallon combined for 21 saves on 28 Moose shot attempts while Lack stopped 27 of 29 Rampage shot attempts.
The Rampage return to the ice on Sunday afternoon when they host the Grand Rapids Griffins at 4:30 p.m. at the AT&T Center .