SAN ANTONIO - Two first period goals fromDominik Shine and Dylan McIlrath set the tone on Thursday night as the Grand Rapids Griffins defeated the San Antonio Rampage, 6-2, at the AT&T Center.
The Griffins (41-25-2-7) won their seventh game in the last 10 contests, while the Rampage (34-30-10-0) stumbled to their fourth loss in five games.
Grand Rapids is back in action on Saturday when they take on the Cleveland Monsters in the regular season finale from Van Andel Arena. The puck drops at 7:00 p.m.
Shine put the Griffins on the board first with his sixth goal of the season just 2:48 into the game. He scored from the right circle after Zach Nastasiuk forced a turnover in the Rampage zone and then made the pass to the open Pinckney, Michigan native.
McIlrath added his sixth tally at the 12:06 mark with a knuckleball from the right point that caught Ville Husso by surprise. Colin Campbell skated the puck into the zone up the right boards before finding the open defenseman for the 2-goal lead.
Andrew Agozzino scored his 23rd goal of the year at 8:23 of the second stanza. A long pass from Samuel Blais in the San Antonio zone provided the scoring chance. The left winger then sent a laser into the top right corner of the net.
Exactly one minute later at 9:23, Shine added his second goal of the game. Corey Elkins made a play in front of the net before passing the puck back to the middle of the slot for the open shot.
Ben Street scored his 20th goal with 6:44 left in the second period. He deflected a shot near the right circle from a McIlrath shot for the 4-1 lead.
McIlrath added another goal 4:03 into the third period. He took a slap shot from nearly the same spot at the right point. The puck flamed past Husso’s left glove for the four-goal lead.
Filip Hronek potted his 10th goal of the year with 5:57 remaining in regulation. He took a wrist shot from the top of the left circle after a cross-ice pass from Turner Elson. The puck slipped past the goaltender’s right arm for the 6-1 advantage.
The Rampage added another goal with 5:13 left when Austin Poganski scored his first goal of the campaign. Josh Dickinson made a slick centering pass from behind the net to a streaking Poganski who hammered it past Tom McCollum for the 6-2 final score.
McCollum finished the game with 36 saves for his 20th win of the season, while Husso made 18 saves in a losing effort.
Each team finished the game 0-for-3 on the power play.
Three Stars: 1. GR McIlrath (two goals, assist); 2. GR Shine (two goals); 3. SA Poganski (goal)