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LeNeveu's 27-save performance lifts San Antonio to 4-2 AHL win over Toronto

TORONTO - The San Antonio Rampage may be thousands of miles from Texas, but they looked right at home Wednesday night in the snow-battered Ontario capital.

David LeNeveu made 27 saves and Nate DiCasmirro scored the game-winner early in the third period as the visiting San Antonio Rampage downed the Toronto Marlies 4-2 in American Hockey League action.

Forwards David Spina, Cam Paddock and Chris Durno, into an empty net, also scored for the Rampage in front of 1,981 fans who braved a snowy Toronto evening and made it to Ricoh Coliseum.

Chris Harrington and David Ling replied for the Marlies.

San Antonio (28-14-7) improved to 6-1-1 on its gruelling 14-game road odyssey, as the Rampage endure their annual "February Rodeo Road Trip." The team gets booted out of its home rink, the AT&T Center, every year when the rodeo comes to town.

Toronto (31-11-5) dropped its second consecutive game but remains entrenched in first place in the North Division.

"They're a fast club and any team that has a lot of speed that comes into our barn is going to cause some trouble," said Marlies centre John Mitchell, who picked up an assist on Toronto's second goal. "They were buzzing around a lot out there."

LeNeveu made one of his best stops with the game on the line midway through the third period, sliding across the crease to block defenceman Jay Harrison's shot from in close. In the very late stages of the frame, LeNeveu also made two big stops on Marlies winger Colin Murphy.

At the other end, Marlies netminder Justin Pogge made 21 saves on 23 shots.

"There's always things we need to work on, defensive-zone coverage, in the neutral zone, stuff like that," Mitchell said.

San Antonio was 0-for-5 on the power play, while Toronto went 0-for-6 with the man advantage.

The Rampage led 2-1 after the first period and the game was tied 2-2 through 40 minutes.

Harrington opened the scoring for the Marlies when he kept the puck on a 2-on-1 and fired a wrist shot past LeNeveu's blocker at 5:49 of the first period. Less than a minute later, Spina tied it up for San Antonio when his shot from a bad angle down near the goal-line snuck between Pogge's arm and body at 6:47.

Rampage winger Jon DiSalvatore was awarded a penalty shot at 8:44 of the first after being hooked while on a breakaway by Toronto's Michel Leveille, but Pogge denied the five-hole attempt.

In the final minute of the period, with Rampage winger Chris Durno serving a slashing penalty, Paddock gave San Antonio a 2-1 edge with a shorthanded marker. The right winger won the race for the loose puck, cut in on the Marlies net, deked and then slid the puck between Pogge's legs at 19:33.

Ling tied it up for Toronto at 12:23 of the second period when he deflected defenceman Phil Oreskovic's point shot past LeNeveu.

The game remained knotted at 2-2 until DiCasmirro deflected defenceman Logan Stephenson's high wrist shot past Pogge at 6:25 of the third period. The Marlies goalie had little chance on the play, as the puck was sharply redirected.

Durno sealed the victory for San Antonio when he slid the puck into an empty net with eight seconds left.


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