|McCaffery makes it 4 in two
games in first star effort versus Windsor
One small change sometimes makes a big difference in the overall team play. Big winger Bill Kinkel and the Rangers' smallest forward Chad McCaffery swaped spots on the Rangers' second and third lines and it seemed to make all of the difference in the world for the Rangers #2 unit. Chad McCaffery was the top star in the Rangers 6-3 victory over the Windsor Spitfires, with his second straight two goal performance, McCaffery even added an assist on David Clarkson's late second period goal. That second period with only 14 second left on the clock was probably more or less the margin of victory for the Rangers. Dickie passed the puck up ice to McCaffery, who found Clarkson just around center ice where he played the puck perfectly to avoid a two line pass. Clarkson beat Aschaber on the semi-break and pretty much deflated the Spitfires after Lomas had just given them life making the score 4-2, just over one minute prior.
The Rangers as they have been having a habit of doing lately, got an early jump on the Spitfires. Hard skating, and hard checking lead to a 2-0 lead on goals by McCaffery and Michael Richards. The first period also saw the Rangers directing another 20 shots at Aschaber that did not find the back of the net. More Rangers pressure eventually lead to a 3-0 goal by Matt Grennier. Controversy would follow. While killing a Rangers' powerplay Rob Hennigar jumped out of the zone with the puck, it was taken away but when it was fed back to Hennigar, he appeared to be over two lines. A breakaway ensued and he was hooked by Halkidis, Rangers fans were quick to react as Joe Park motioned towards center ice for the penalty shot. Hennigar didn't make a mistake on the deke and beat Dickie against the flow. More boing ensued however it was nice to see that no debris was thrown in the direction of the ice by the always polite Rangers fans, a far cry from what is the norm in Windsor.
The third period saw a frustrated Windsor Spitfires team which appeared to have an edge in play and did once beat netminder Dickie while on the man-advantage, but for the most part players like Janssen were just as happy dumping players, as Cam did over Scott Dickie on the 2nd Rangers goal. David Clarkson was the victim of a blindside hit by Jansen when he did not have the puck and suddenly it became apparent that the Rangers' fuse with Mr. Jansen had come to an abrupt end as Marcus Smith flew in to Clarkson's aid throwing punches at Jansen as the two hit the ice. Nathan O'Nabigon for the first game in four failed to put a two-spot on the board, however did manage to score an empty netter to make the final 6-3.
Between the two teams an All-Star or WJC line
was missing, the Spitfies had Gleason, and Wellwood at the WJC, along with
other scratches, the Rangers were missing Derek Roy, and Gregory Campbell
with team Canada. Adam Keefe, and Peter Kanko were both out injured.
The Rangers who fortunately dressed 8 defensemen lost 2 of the group early
in the game. Harrison hurt himself upon landing after a fight and
Matt Manias left the game sick. The win extended the Rangers overall
winning streak to 5 games, and their home game winning streak went to 6