Rangers: 34-25-2-2, sixth in west
Greyhounds: 44-15-3-1, second in west
Head to head: Kitchener is 1-1-1-0 against the Soo this season.
Game-time: 7:07 p.m.
The skinny: The ‘Hounds are six points ahead of Windsor for first in the west division and three back of Erie for first overall in the league. Kitchener is two points up on Flint and fighting to hold on to sixth place with five games to go.
Keep an eye on: Soo rookie Matt Villalta has taken over for Joseph Raaymakers as the starting goalie and allowed just one goal in the Greyhounds’ 2-1 win over the Rangers this past Sunday.
Additional reading: Luke Opilka to be the go-to goalie now that he's back.
Adam Mascherin-Greg Meireles-Joseph Garreffa
Connor Bunnaman-Darby Llewellyn-Jake Henderson
Nick McHugh-Riley Damiani-Cole Carter
Dylan Seitz-Eric Guest-Jonathan Yantsis
Andrew Burns-Frank Hora
Giovanni Vallati-Dylan Di Perna
Alex Peterson-Kyle Gentles
Luke Richardson (9-4) starts.
Sault Ste. Marie:
Boris Katchouk-Blake Speers-Jack Kopacka
Tim Gettinger-Morgan Frost-Zach Senyshyn
Barrett Hayton-Hayden Verbeek-Bobby MacIntyre
Calvin Martin-Otto Makinen-David Miller
Colton White-Conor Timmins
Noah Carroll-Gustav Bouramann
Anthony DeMeo-Mac Hollowell
Matt Villalta, Soo (23-2-0-0) starts.
- Rangers D Elijah Roberts is sick and listed as day-to-day. He did not attend practice Thursday.
- Doug Blaisdell (knee) and Connor Hall (shoulder) are both back rehabbing at the Aud but neither player is expected to return this season. Blaisdell still has another surgery planned.
- Luke Opilka is expected to make his return Saturday in Flint. He has been out since mid-February with a concussion.
- Rangers playoff tickets go on sale March 17 at 10 a.m. Adults: $23.50. Kids: $19.75.
- That third goal with 1:18 to go in the first really hurt. Those late period markers have been killers of late.
- Luke Richardson allowed five goals on 18 shots. Opilka started the third and got a bit of a warmup for Saturday's tilt in Flint. He stopped 10 of the 11 shots he faced.
- Some ugly minus numbers in this one for a few Rangers.
- The good? Kitchener outshot the 'Hounds 41-29. The bad? The Soo went 38-22 on draws.
- Joseph Garreffa scored his 25th goal of the season. He had three last season.
- So Saturday's game will be a battle for sixth. If Flint wins in regulation the teams will be tied with 72 points but the Firebirds will get top billing for winning the season series.
JB's top three Rangers: Joseph Garreffa, Adam Mascherin, Frank Hora