October 15, 2015 – WINNIPEG, MB – The Manitoba Moose were back home after a four year absence since the Winnipeg Jets came to town and the team relocated to St. Johns and became the Ice Caps. The last time the Moose played a game at the MTS Centre was May 6th 2011 a playoff match up vs the Hamilton Bullldogs where they were defeated 5-1 and eliminated from the playoffs. The Moose 2.0 were facing one of the newest AHL teams the Ontario Reign the top affilite for the LA Kings. It would not be a happy return as the Moose dropped a 4-1 decision to the Reign before a sold out lower bowl crowd of 8812 as the upperdeck has not been opened up for the AHL club as of yet.
The Moose are now winless in there opening three games of the season and will look to rebound as these two teams will go at it again on Saturday night.
Connor Hellebuyck got the start for the Moose and stopped 21 of 24 shots and took the loss .
The Moose finished the game 1-7 on the power play which proved to be the difference in the game which was somewhat of neutral zone battle as both teams were not very offensive although the Reign had most of the chances .
Peter Budaj the former Jet farmhand and former NHL starting goalie with the Avs and Habs was solid when he had to be stopping 16 of 17 shots getting the win for Ontario.
The young Moose squad seemed to have the jitters in front of the loud MTS Centre faithful who were rocking all game long.
The high point of the night came in the 3rd period as Patrice Cormier tapped in a Chase De Leo pass to get the Moose’s first goal on home ice in four years.
Reign goal scorers were Jamie McBain , Michael Mersch with a pair and Justin Auger added a single.
The Reign feature some familiar former NHL players in Paul Bissonnette known as Biz Nasty had the crowd on the edge of there seats as they were hoping to see him drop the mitts but he didn’t. Ray Emery who just recently signed with the Reign may get the start in net on Saturday.
Notes: The Moose assigned defenceman Brennan Serville to the ECHL ‘s Tulsa Oilers the 2011 draft pick is in his first pro season after a four year career at Michigan University. Winnipeg native Pete Stoykewych was a healthy scratch the former Manitoba Junior Hockey League player was hoping to get into the line up tonight in front of family and friends.
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