Weekend #2 Brampton and S.S. Marie

Rangers Fall to Winless in last 13

Rookie netminder: Carlo DiRienzo grimaces after allowing the 3rd goal in a 4-1 loss to the Brampton Battalion.

Sure the entire lineup hasn't all been there to see the pain, and for the most part the Rangers have been playing shorthanded all season long.  The Rangers started and ended the weekend short: Steve Eminger (Washington), Roy (Buffalo), Grennier (Knee), Amodeo (Suspension), Keefe(Suspension), Manias (Suspension).  Unfortunately after a 5 minute boarding call the Rangers both ended this weekend and start the next shorthanded losing super-sophomore star: Petr Kanko, after what many felt was a weak call, in a game which many disgruntled Rangers fans felt was filled with weak calls which seemed to go the Greyhounds way.

Not everyone has been present for the entire streak but the wear and tear has to be getting to the Rangers who displayed their most upstart effort of the season.  The last victory that the Kitchener Rangers posted was in March of 2002 in Erie Pennsylvania.  Since their triumphant win in Erie the Rangers were swept out of the playoffs by the Guelph Storm in 4 games, the Rangers went 0-1-4 in 5 pre season games tying 3 of them by scores of 2-2.  The Rangers are now 0-3-1 in the new season.  In the past 13 games playoffs, presason and this season combined the Rangers are 0-8-5.


The Rangers had star forward Petr Kanko return but Kanko alone would not be enough for the Rangers offense which through the first three games had stalled, producing a total of  3 goals in two games, and this Friday night wouldn't bear much more in the way of good news for the Rangers, while their offense didn't exactly sputter they did fall victim to a hot netminder along with many shooting misfortunes.  Top star and third-year netminder: Brad Topping was sensational at times.  Keeping the Battalion in the game making a total of 54 saves on 55 Rangers shots on goal, Topping would just not yield the go-ahead goal to the Rangers, and eventually frustration set in as the Rangers went down 2-1 in the second and quick thereafter 4-1.  Unfortunately for 16 year old rookie: DiRienzo things did not go as planned in his first OHL start, Carlo allowed two goals in the second period that he would have probably liked to have had back before Adam Henrich roofed a shot just under the cross-bar midway through the second period on a spectacular solo effort.  Aside from Brad Topping who at times single-handedly kept the Battalion in the game, Henrich was a dominant offensive force filling the net with two pucks and nearly a third.  It was a disheartening loss for the Rangers who played the entire game with only 9 forwards, and Kanko seemed to be off-pace after returning from the LA Kings camp where he impressed.  For some members of the Battalion, the win was more important since it was redemption for a 10-0 loss last season at the Aud, especially since many Battalion fans made the trip from Brampton down to the Aud.

Finally the Rangers had their chance, they had the same lineup as the previous game on Friday night and a Soo team in town that was playing their third game in three nights.  Unfortunately Petr Kanko was removed from the game after a boarding major in the first period leaving the Rangers with only 8 forwards, in addition the Rangers had a 5-minute major to kill off.  On the overall the Rangers finished the game with 4 powerplays while the Greyhounds were granted 10, the four thousand and change in attendance let officials: Koharski and Beer know how disgruntled they were throughout the first two periods.  Michael Richards (temporarily wearing the 'C' in the absence of some of the veteran players) was easily the best skater on the ice.  In addition to scoring the two Rangers goals, Richards' also nailed two posts in the game.  It was very good to see Richards' still showing his 'A' game against the Greyhounds even with his cousin being absent.  The Rangers showed an inspired effort picking up a 2-0 lead by the end of the third, even with the short bench the Rangers had no let up in the third however recently acquired overager: Matt Herneisen broke the goose egg and later the game was tied.  The Rangers had their chances in the dying minutes and late in the extra frame with the man advantage but failed to convert.  After tying 3 exhibition games 2-2, it seemed only fitting that the Rangers would chalk up their first regular season point with a 2-2 tie.  After being pulled in favour of rookie: Carlo DiRienzo in the season opener Scott Dickie was solid and at times absolutely sensational especially the way that he read the play all game long.  Michael Richards was awarded first star, Matt Herneisen was second star and Scott Dickie took third star honors.