San Jose, Calif. - The San Jose Barracuda (8-1-0-1) and San Antonio Rampage (St. Louis Blues) (2-9-0-0) did battle on Friday for the final time during the 2018-19 season. The teams were fresh off a highly contested matchup in San Antonio exactly one week ago that the Barracuda won 2-1. The 'Cuda came in having won five out of their last six games and their success would continue, as San Jose was victorious by a final score of 3-1 at SAP Center at San Jose.
The first period was void of goal-scoring, as goaltenders Ville Husso (Rampage) and Josef Korenar (Barracuda) stole the show. Each netminder made nine saves in the first frame and controlled the play for their respective clubs. The 'Cuda would get into penalty trouble near the end of the first period, when Maxim Letunov took two consecutive penalties, the second of which bled into the second period of action.
Only 20 seconds after killing the Letunov high-sticking minor, the Barracuda would break the scoreless tie. After a booming Keaton Middleton slapshot from the blue line, Lukas Radil (1) cleaned up a rebound and tucked it behind Husso for a 1-0 lead with 18:57 remaining in the second period. The Barracuda would strike again at the 11:35 mark of the second when Letunov attempted a wraparound which was saved but bounced to the tape of Even Weinger (4) who went five-hole and gave San Jose a 2-0 lead. Neither team took a penalty in the second period, but the Barracuda scored twice to take a 2-0 lead into the dressing room.
The Barracuda continued where they left off once the third period started, as clunky play in front of the Rampage net led to a bouncing puck that ricocheted past Husso. Jeffrey Viel(1) was credited with the goal, which gave the 'Cuda a three-goal advantage with 17:03 remaining in the third. The Rampage would get on the board in the third, with a beautiful backhand finish by Samuel Blais (1). Josef Korenar took over Friday allowing only one goal on 23 shots. Korenar got his team-leading fifth win, while improving to an impressive 5-0-0 on the season.
The Barracuda are back in action on Monday, as the welcome the Stockton Heat to SAP Center here in San Jose. Puck drop will be at 7 PM between the Pacific Division rivals in their third meeting of the season.