CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa -- Sioux City's chance to return to the playoffs officially came to an end Saturday night in Cedar Rapids.
Trailing by the final spot seven points with four games remaining in the regular season, the Musketeers could not muster any offense in a 4-0 loss to Cedar Rapids here Saturday. Sioux City, which reached the Clark Cup Finals a year ago, has lost three in a row to help Tri-City clinch the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.
The RoughRiders' first goal came as Roman Ahcan scored on a breakaway to beat Matt Jurusik at the 10:19 mark of the first period despite the Musketeers holding a 10-4 shots on goal advantage at that point.
After Cedar Rapids killed off a penalty, the Musketeers did not help themselves by putting the RoughRiders on the man advantage as both Dylan Mills and Martin Pospisil were whistled for roughing.
Kyle Looft made the Musketeers pay with a power-play goal off an assist from Nathan Smith to make it 2-0 after one.
Neither team scored in the second period, but Cedar Rapids added an insurance goal in the third period. Nathan Smith scored his 15th goal of the season assisted by Marek Valach and Graham Slaggert.
Cedar Rapids went 2 of 6 on the power play while Sioux City was 0-for-4. The RoughRidgers were outshot 32-24.
The RoughRiders (24-24-10), who moved just a point behind Chicago for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, added an empty-net goal with 1:34 to go from Graham Slaggert.
Sioux City (24-26-7) is back in action Wednesday at Sioux Falls and closes out its season with games on the road against Tri-City on Friday and Omaha on Saturday.