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October 24, 2014

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Pair of Wranglers injured in punishing loss

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STEPHEN SYLVANIE / SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Las Vegas Wranglers forward Matt Tassone (16) fights with Colorado Eagles defenseman Daniel Johnston during the third period of play on Wednesday night.

Wranglers vs. Colorado Eagles

Colorado Eagles players swarm around the puck to help protect their net during the third period of a game at the Orleans Arena on Wednesday night. Launch slideshow »

After a 5-2 drubbing at the hands of the Colorado Eagles on Tuesday night, the Wranglers hit the ice tonight looking for revenge, yet never found it.

The game started well for Las Vegas, with Adam Hughesman scoring his team-leading 13th goal of the season.

It was all Colorado after that, starting with a Trent Daavettila slapshot that was so fast it fooled both Wranglers netminder Travis Fullerton and the goal judge, as the red goal light wasn't triggered until the Eagles were nearly finished celebrating on the ice.

In the second period, Eagles skaters Brock Nixon and Alex Hudson scored 39 seconds apart to mount a 3-1 lead.

The third period was marred by a stretch of violence that resulted in two Wranglers leaving the ice with injuries on separate plays within minutes of each other. Robert Smith left the ice with an apparent knee injury midway through the third after a knee-to-knee collision with an Eagles player. Minutes later, Matt Tassone was helped off by a Wrangler trainer after hitting his head after being thrown to the ice during a fight. Neither player would return. The Eagles netted a power play goal courtesy of Luke Fulghum with just under five minutes to go in the third to ice a 4-1 victory.

The Wranglers continue a long homestand with the first of two games in a row against the Utah Grizzlies on Friday night.

The team will be wearing special UNLV-themed jerseys, which will be auctioned off to benefit the Dave Rice Foundation.

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