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Bullfrogs’ Semifinal Series Starts at Portland Tonight

The Bullfrogs open their Western Conference final series tonight against the Portland Rage at the Memorial Coliseum in Portland.

Game 2 of the Roller Hockey International playoff series will be at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday at The Pond of Anaheim. If the teams split the series, a 12-minute mini-game will follow Game 2 to decide who will advance to the RHI championship series against the Eastern Conference champion, the winner of the Buffalo-Minnesota series.

The Bullfrogs, who won the RHI championship last season, finished the regular season losing five of their last six games. But a different team has shown up for the playoffs.

“I never lost confidence in this team,” Bullfrogs Coach Grant Sonier said. “During the season, there were times we were very undisciplined and it cost us. In the playoffs, we’ve been focused.”

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The Bullfrogs have won four consecutive playoff games, including a two-game sweep of the Blades in the Pacific Division finals.

In the playoffs, Victor Gervais is the Bullfrogs’ hot scorer, with a league-high 11 goals in four games.

Goalie Rob Laurie, who struggled in the second half of the season, has returned to top form. He has four victories in four playoff starts and leads the league in post-season save percentage. Laurie is 7-0 in seven career RHI playoff starts.

Portland is led by forwards Andy Rymsha and Brian Downey, the two top scorers in the RHI playoffs with 19 and 17 points. The Rage averaged more than nine goals in four playoff games.

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