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Stung, offense continues to stall on the road

David Clarkson attempts to tip a puck past Ryan Munce during the first period.
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The Rangers 12 game unbeaten streak came to a crashing halt as the Sarnia Sting, currently on the outside looking in at a playoff spot, put up a courageous home effort in upsetting the Rangers before 3,568 fans at the Sarnia Sports and Entertainment Centre.  The Rangers have struggled to find offense on the road this season, and the 4-2 loss in Sarnia continued a string of 4 road games where the Rangers have managed a modest 9 goals of offense, for comparison, on home ice the Rangers have 25 goals in their last four games.  Things didn't start with the down-tempo pace that they ended with for the Rangers.  At the two minute mark of the first period, Adam Keefe sent Mike Duco in all alone and Duco made little mistake scoring his 10th of the season, after taking the early 1-0 lead the Rangers' offense appeared stiffled.  Adam Munce was the centre of attention for the third straight night, he allowed the very minimum in the way of rebounds and kept the Sting to within one goal.

In the second period the Sting started to really take the play to the Rangers, both physically and in the offensive zone.  Turple seemed to have the answers in the Rangers' net, making a spectacular toe stop and thwarting numerous other Sting opportunities.  The Sting finally broke through on the powerplay.  Michael Haley found himself unharassed in the high slot and blasted a shot through the five-hole to bring the Sting back on even terms.  More concerning was the Rangers' stalling offense, that and a number of Rangers that were simply getting banged up.

The Rangers scramble in the final minutes of the game, this goal brings them to within one.
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The third period was filled with chances at both ends, unfortunately for the Rangers, David Clarkson's nearly consecutive 7 minutes in the penalty box would prove too much to over come, immediately after serving a cross-checking minor the Rangers' overage winger stormed across the ice flattening Erik Schwanz who had the puck at the Sarnia bench.  Schwanz was shaken and Clarkson was on the way to the showers.  Only 18 seconds into the major penalty Nicholas Tuzzolino's point shot was tipped past Turple on the stick-side by Brad Efthimiou to give the Sting their first lead of the game.  Minutes later while playing 4-on-4, the Rangers made a terrible decision in the offensive zone, causing a two-on-one rush.  Painchaud who intercept the ill-fated point pass, kept the puck to himself sending a lazer beam under Dan Turple's arm.  The Rangers' didn't pack it in there, with Dan Turple on the bench for most of the final two minutes.  With only 90 seconds left a Rangers' scramble led to a goal that was disallowed because of the net being dislodged, and moments later on the faceoff, Paul McFarland slammed a shot through Munce's legs to bring the Rangers back to within one.  The Rangers called a timeout and the record-high amount of Rangers' supporters in Sarnia tried to rally around the team, but ultimately they failed to get their big chance.  Brad Efthimiou intercepted a pass, and despite Andre Benoit's efforts at goaltending managed to blast a shot off of Benoit's hand and into the net.

The specialty teams were the difference as the Sting went 2 for 5 on the powerplay as the Rangers went 0 for 4, entering the game the Rangers had one of the top road penalty kills on the road.  The game also finished with a pair of entertaining fights between Adam Keefe and Marco Capara, and as time expired between Joe McCann and Kelsey Wilson.  For Dan Turple it was his first loss in a Rangers' uniform his record fell to 2-1-0, and the Rangers also lost their first game while playing with their third jerseys as well.  David Clarkson's late game major was for charging and did include a game misconduct, he was not assessed a match penalty.  After returning to action the night before Dan Fristche left the game with only minutes left and appeared to have re-injured his shoulder.