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Griffins Can't Stop Rampage in 3-2 Loss
San Antonio scores three in the second to take the game...
By Jason Kasiorek

The Griffins fell to the San Antonio Rampage 3-2 in yet another poor effort by the home team. Grand Rapids again played with 16 players, two under the limit, with Evan McGrath and Andy Delmore healthy scratches for the straight contest. Young guns Jan Mursak (20) and Tomas Tatar (12) scored for Grand Rapids which has lost 15 of its last 18 at home. With seven home games remaining, the team has already tied the franchise record for most home defeats in a season and looks to be on a course to break it next weekend.

The first period looked like what it was, a battle between two last place clubs. Neither team had a lot of jump or was able to generate many quality scoring chances. There was just a lot of back and forth play, chasing the puck around. Jan Mursak started the scoring, notching his 20th of the season on a scramble in front. Emmerton put a shot on Tjordman and Mursak at the other side of the crease picked up the rebound and lifted it over the sprawled netminder for a powerplay goal. Lessard took a holding penalty later in the period, argued it to strongly and turned it into a four minute GR powerplay. Unfortunately the Griffins couldn't get control int he Rampage zone and did not capitalize. Shots on Goal: GR 6 - San 6.

Things fell apart as usual in the second, as Weston scored early in the period to tie the game at one. Paul Crosty dropped the gloves to go with Lessard, who sakted away and wanted nothing to do with that. Logan Pyett took a shot off the cheekbone that stung him, but after a few minutes he returned to play. Around the midpoint Turris scored, threading a bouncing puck through Larsson during a scramble in front. The Griffins got another powerplay, but it was quickly negated by a Tatar cross-checking penalty. Rissmiller had a great chance to tie things up with a wraparound that just missed. Williams gave the puck away, and Pyett was not quick enough to catch Meyer who went in alone on Larsson. The speedy forward made a great move to freeze the goalie and then slid the puck in. Shots on Goal: GR 9 - San 10.

The highlight of the third period was a highlight reel goal by rookie Tomas Tatar. The talented sniper split the defense and kept control of the puck went in on Tordjman made a couple of nifty moves and buried it, bringing the Van Andel crowd to its feet. The Griffins couldn't muster anything else and with time running out pulled Larsson to the bench. Kindl took a penalty trying to keep the puck out of the empty net, and time ran out on a 3-2 Rampage win. Shots on Goal: GR 9 - San 11. For the Game: GR 24 - San 27.

Vigilante - Rissmiller - Mursak
Ritola - Abdelkader - Tardif
Tatar - Newbury - Williams
Emmerton - Abdelkader - Pare

Pyett - Janik
Ehrhardt - Kindl
Crosty - Kindl/Janik

Starter: Larsson
Backup: McCollum

Andy Delmore - Healthy
Evan McGrath - Healthy

Tatar - Newbury - Pare
Williams - Kindl

Ritola - Abdelkader - Tardif
Janik - Pyett

Emmerton - Rissmiller - Mursak

Ritola - Abdelkader
Janik - Pyett

Newbury - Tardif
Ehrhardt - Kindl

Pare - Emmerton

Vigilante - Mursak

Three Stars:
3 Meyer - San
2 Mursak - GR
1 Sullivan - San


It can't say much about the coach's confidence in you that he would rather sit you in favor of crosty - and play two men short. I don't think Delmore or Mcgrath have plaed well as of late, but there are several other players that could join them in that rotation.

The good (sort of) news is that some re-inforcements are on the way with Brad May, Sergei Kolosov and Ole-Kristian Tollefsen on the way soon. I don't think they will make that much of an impact, but we can only look up from the bottom...

What an electrifying goal by Tatar! If he can make that kind of play on a semi-regular basis, he won't be in the AHL long.

Official Game Sheet