Game #48: Tucson (3) at Stockton (4) – SO
SOG: TUC (28) – STK (26)
PP: TUC (0/5) – STK (3/6)
TUC SCORING: Miele (14, 15), Speers (3)
STK SCORING: Hamilton (3pp), Ruzicka (9pp), Leslie (5pp), Kirkland (SOGWG)
TUCSON BATTLES BACK TO TAKE A POINT IN STOCKTON SATURDAY
Trailing 3-1 with nine minutes to go in regulation Saturday, the Roadrunners battled back to earn a valuable Pacific Division point in the San Joaquin Valley before falling in a shootout 4-3.
Despite a very strong start from Tucson, in which they earned the games first five shots and controlled possession, all the home-hosting Heat needed was one chance on the man advantage in the first period to take the first lead of the night.
Minutes after a blast from the point by Rob Hamilton beat Ivan Prosvetov, the second Tucson minor penalty of the period by Tucson resulted in the second power play goal of the game for the Heat.
Trailing 2-0 at the end of one thanks to the two special teams goals by Stockton, Andy Miele would pull Tucson back within one just 3:48 into the second period. After Tyler Steenbergen forced a takeaway in the attacking end, the subsequent possession eventually allowed Aaron Ness, who was driving to the net, to dish a backhand pass to Miele out in front to make it a 2-1 contest.
After 14 minutes of the one-goal game, the third power play of the night for the Heat would see them remain perfect, extending their lead back to two.
Tucson entered the third period trailing by that 3-1 score and shortly after the midway point Miele would get his second of the night to once again bring the setting to a one-goal game. A two-on-one with Kelly Klima concluded with the Roadrunners veteran forward to finish a pass that came from the right-handed winger.
Just 61 seconds later the Roadrunners evened the score for the first time all night at 3-3. The third line won a defensive zone faceoff and transitioned up ice, leading to Blake Speers shot from the right circle. The rebound kicked off of Artyom Zagidulin’s pads and as Jeremy Gregoire was tied up in front with a Heat defender, the puck glanced the defender’s skate and ricocheted back past Zagidulin to bring the score to a knot.
Two crucial penalty kills by the Roadrunners forced overtime and after a killing another there, no score was found and a shootout became necessary.
In the shootout Stockton’s Austin Czarnik and Justin Kirkland both beat Tyler Parks, who took over for Prosvetov in relief at the start of the third period, and although a nifty second round goal from Jordan Gross came by way of his trusty move, the Heat earned the extra point.
Tucson will now conclude their Gem Show Road Trip with their seventh of seven games on the trip Monday Night at SAP Center in San Jose against the Barracuda.
THEY SAID IT
“We battled. I thought the guys did a great job in the third period of getting pucks to the net, getting bodies to the net and scoring two goals. That was huge to come out of here with a point.”Roadrunners goaltender Tyler Parks speaking post-game on the team earning a valuable Pacific Division point.
DON’T OVERLOOK IT
That’s a resilient third period effort to even get a point. It’s often tough to overcome allowing three power play goals but Tucson did and got a point because of it tonight.
Games like these even further the importance and value of players like Andy Miele, who came up big both on and off the box score with his two goals and continued physicality throughout the night.
GOTTA SEE IT
This is a showing of great team chemistry by the Roadrunners.
Jordan Gross gloves down the Stockton clear and immediately shuffles it to his solid defensive partner Aaron Ness. Ness, as usual, quickly works the play ahead to Tyler Steenbergen. Steenbergen then lets his two linemates take it from there, completing a nice team goal for Tucson. Within about seven seconds all five Roadrunners touch the puck and score.
PHOTO OF THE GAME
In the midst of Tucson’s early struggles, Kyle Capobianco lays in net here in effort to potentially block a shot with Prosvetov out of net.
What’s even more impressive is that Michael Chaput comes from out of the picture to interject, actually saving what should have been a sure-fire goal for the Heat.