|Scott Dickie back on the straight
and narrow with impressive shutout
Scott Dickie earned his 4th career shutout infront of a national television audience, the game being broadcast on Rogers Sportsnet. Not only was it the fourth shutout of Dickie's career, but it was also the fourth shutout during the still young Rangers season. Matt Harpwood (1), Carlo DiRienzo (2) and Scott Dickie have combined for those 4 Rangers shutouts, infact the Rangers now have an astonishing 10 shutouts over the last two seasons combined. While he wasn't constantly busy, Dickie did have his share of tough saves while the game was close while the Rangers were fending off a Knights two-man advantage with the score 2-0 Kitchener, and also a breakaway stop on Logan Hunter. The victory made the Rangers unbeaten in their last ten on home ice (7-0-3-0), and more than adequately atoned for a 3-2 loss before a sellout crowd of 8680 in London just a week earlier.
The Rangers started the hard hitting, close checking affair with intensity that hasn't been all season long, not to undermine the Rangers play or efforts this season, but in this game the Rangers showed up to play like no Rangers team has in years. The Rangers sent 4 flying lines out at the London Knights and those four lines like devastating ocean waves didn't stop coming at the Knights.
Line 1: Kinkel-Roy-Campbell
DeBoer seems very intent on keeping his lines together, the loss of Kanko to injury has disrupted the flow for the Rangers top unit, however Kinkel has fit in very well, along with adding a significant amount of muscle to the line. Big Bill Kinkel has been pressured in keeping up with all of the extra ice time but has adjusted well on the overall. Along with turning over four offensive units, the number 3 defense line has also seen its share of ice time. Harrison and Manias have responded well together with increased ice time. The Rangers look forward to seeing Manias' offensive flair blossom.
Roy's goal and assist capped off an 8 point weekend, Roy's opening goal on the powerplay proved to be the winner. Evan McGrath for a chance was the offensive story for the Rangers, being named the game's second star behind Dickie who's shutout earned him the first star. 2002 1st rounder: Evan McGrath set up a pair of goals before wowing the near 5,000 person crowd with a breakaway on a Dennis Wideman turnover where he double-deked Chris Houle creating a 3-goal bulge just prior to the second intermission. Despite allowing 5 goals on 45 shots before being releived by rookie Gerald Coleman, Houle was very impressive. Clarkson, Martynowski and Eason rounded out the scoring for the Rangers.
David Clarkson who sat two consecutive games
prior to Friday's game has now responded to coach Peter DeBoer's challenge
and scored goals in consecutive games. Eason's goal, gave him two
on the season, his top offensive output of his OHL career. While
scoring from the point isn't the biggest part of T.J. Eason's game, it
is a part which has notably improved this season. The biggest miscue
by the Rangers was made by overage defender: George Halkidis who took a
risk trying to force the Knights offside crossing over Eason just infront
of the blueline, the move proved to be ill-advised as Dickie was forced
to bail him out with a breakaway stop.