AT&T Center – Less than a minute after the opening puck drop, it became obvious the San Antonio Rampage were determined to end their four-game losing streak. Not even a flying bird could stop them.
Bobby Butler tallied two goals as the Rampage defeated the Oklahoma City Barons (5-3-2-0, 12 points) in front of an announced crowd of 3,923 at the AT&T Center on Sunday afternoon.
Butler got the scoring started just 59 seconds into the contest when he got a point blank shot past Oklahoma City goaltender Laurent Brossoit to put the Rampage up 1-0 going into the second period.
Steven Kampfer extended San Antonio’s lead to 2-0 in the middle frame with a power play goal at the 7:50 mark. Shane O’Brien and Garrett Wilson assisted on Kampfer’s fourth of the year.
As Oklahoma City pulled Brossoit for an extra attacker, Butler netted his second of the game to give the Rampage a commanding three goal lead at the 17:44 mark of the third period. The Barons finally got on the scoreboard in the final seconds with Ryan Hamilton’s sixth of the season to complete the scoring and 3-1 San Antonio win.
“Our bench is stable most of the time,” Rampage head coach Tom Rowe said. “Bobby’s goal helped after they [Oklahoma City] had a great first shift. It got the building alive, it got the bench alive and it gave us energy.”
The Rampage outshot the Barons 33-21 for the game, allowing just three shots in the first period.
“We had some of the best backtracking and sticks, we really intercepted a lot of pucks,” San Antonio goaltender Dan Ellis said. “We always had support so our D-men could stay up. When the defense stays up we were able to squeeze them off, if you can limit a team’s scoring chances like we did tonight, you’re going to give yourself success every night.”
Ellis stopped 20 of 21 shots he faced, while Brossoit saved 30 of the 32 San Antonio shots he faced. Both teams finished the game 1-for-4 on the power play.
The Rampage are now 6-6-0-0 (12 points) on the season and will return to the ice on Tuesday morning to face the Barons for a school day game inside the Cox Convention Center at 10:30 a.m.