Minneapolis, MN – The Minnesota Rink Rats had a tough outing in last night’s first round playoff matchup losing 6-3 against the Dropkicks and going down 0-1 in the series. Minnesota striked early with a goal from John-Michael Liles; a power play goal. Liles snuck into the play alongside Brad Richards scoring on a one-timer. The Rink Rats would carry a 2-1 lead into the second period off of another power play goal by Matthew Lombardi who sped past Steve Staios to beat Biron stick side. The Kicks would score the next 4 goals and go on to win the contest.
Ryan Miller stopped 30 of 36 shots in last night’s contest and didn’t look like himself following a brief layoff following the league’s regular season. The Rink Rats will have to be on their game in order to avoid going down 0-2 before heading home in Minnesota.
“We just need to be more disciplined and better defensively,” said forward Mike Cammalleri. “We took more penalties tonight than we’re used to, which slowed us down a bit on even strength situations. I think we did well offensively, we just need to be more careful in our own end and minimize mistakes.”
The Rats had trouble turning the puck over throughout the game specifically on the second line. “Burnsy and Ranger had a bit of trouble in there tonight against the Kicks’ aggressive attack,” said Coach Dan Bylsma. “We’re going to try mixing a couple of lines up for tonight and see if that helps us at all. Burnsy and Ranger are good players. They had a rough night but I know they’ll be ok as we proceed.”
Other Rats News
The Rink Rats’ Derek Roy and Oscar Moller haven’t been pulling their weight the second half of the season leading many to wonder if they’ll be around next year. GM is a big supporter of Roy, but may look to some other options if they’re eliminated early in this year’s playoffs. Moller is a gifted prospect and shouldn't be expected of much at this point in his career. Still though, GM may look at his options during the offseason and Moller has stated that he’d like to play on the Swedish team that's formed in Detroit.