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The San Antonio Rampage (27-32-3-6) lost in the closing seconds against the Hamilton Bulldogs (30-32-1-4) 4-3 at the AT&T Center Sunday, March 30. The Rampage have now lost two games in a row against the Bulldogs.

“It’s the way we needed to play,” explained Rampage Head Coach Tom Rowe after the game. “The guys did a great job, no complaints with the effort. It’s just individual mistakes that keep hurting us. We played well. Bad coverage and bad decisions cost us the game.”

Coming off a fresh loss, the Rampage were determined to take control of the game. In the first period, the Rampage kept the pressure on Hamilton’s defense as most of the puck action was on the Bulldog side of the rink.

With 2:01 left on the clock, a slap shot by right wing Joey Crabb was met by the back of the net thanks to the assisted effort by fellow right winger John McFarland and defencemen John Lee.

The defense kept up until the second period when Hamilton’s Louis Leblanc snaked through the Rampage defense to score a goal.

The celebration was short lived as Rampage Matt Gilroy shot the puck into the goal while another Rampage player was blocking the view of Bulldog goalie, Robert Mayer.

The power-play assists were credited to center Wade Megan and defenceman Mike Mottau, who tallied his 300th point on that play.

“I think it’s just an indicator that you’ve played a long time, but I think it’ll be nice to look back at when I’m done (playing),” said Mike Mottau on the milestone.

Bulldog goals within five minutes of each other by right wing Mike Blunden and left wing Nick Tarnasky put Hamilton up by two despite the tough defense by San Antonio.

Rampage defenceman John Lee knotted the score at three apiece with 3:40 left in the game. Unfortunately, that gave Defenceman Michael Caruso of the Bulldogs enough time to score on a power play with only 50 seconds left in the game.

“We had the momentum most of the time, we just needed to sustain it,” said Mottau after the game. “There were mess ups that could have been easily avoided. Overall, the guys play hard every night; it’s just difficult coming up on the losing end even when you’re putting in the effort.”

Hectic slaps on the puck and hurried shots couldn’t save the Rampage as they dropped two in a row against the Hamilton Bulldogs.

The next three games will be at home, with the very next being against the Lake Erie Monsters on April Fools Day, April 1, at 7:00 p.m.

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