Game #7 – Tucson (4-1-1-0) vs Iowa (2-5-1-0)
7:05 PM PST, Tucson Arena, Tucson, Arizona
Referees: #57 Andrew Wilk, #56 Brett Iverson
Linesmen: #19 Robb Harrell, #59 Rob Fay
WILD STUFF: Tonight marks the second of four meetings with the Wild this season, and Iowa’s second and final visit to Tucson Arena. The Roadrunners are playing the second of a six-game home stand; the Wild are playing the final of a two-game road trip. The clubs are coming off of a meeting Friday night in which the Roadrunners won by a 4-1 score.
SHUTDOWN SYSTEM: The Roadrunners have allowed just a combined six goals in their previous five games, posting a stellar 4-0-1-0 mark during that span. The team has also killed off 19 of its last 20 penalties during that timeframe, keeping opponents’ power play units in check. Can the Roadrunners put on another solid defensive showing tonight against the Wild?
FIRST ROUND, FIRST LINE: The Roadrunners iced a first line Friday night that consisted of three first-round selections from the 2015 NHL Draft: Dylan Strome (#3 overall), Lawson Crouse (#11 overall), and Mick Merkley (#30 overall). The trio combined for four points Friday (2G, 2A). Can they provide an offensive spark against the Wild again tonight?
PROJECTED LINEUP: The team held an optional pregame morning skate ahead of today’s game at Tucson Arena. Per club policy, specifics regarding the team’s lineup will not be published until 5:00 PM this afternoon. *UPDATED:
LAWSON CROUSE (67) - DYLAN STROME (91) - NICK MERKLEY (38)
EMERSON ETEM (26) - RYAN MACINNIS (72) - MIKE SISLO (9)
MICHAEL BUNTING (27) - TYLER GAUDET (10) - CONOR GARLAND (8)
JENS LOOKE (24) - LANE PEDERSON (18) - MICHAEL LATTA (46)
DAKOTA MERMIS (43) - ANDREW CAMPBELL (2)
JOEL HANLEY (44) - DYSIN MAYO (37)
KYLE CAPOBIANCO (23) - KYLE WOOD (3)
HUNTER MISKA (35)
MICHAEL HOUSER (32)
LATTA GAMES: Michael Latta will be playing in his 250th-career American Hockey League game tonight. Over the course of six seasons, Latta has spent time with five different AHL clubs: Milwaukee Admirals (122), Hershey Bears (61), Ontario Reign (29), Rockford IceHogs (32), and Tucson (5). He has registered 122 points (43G, 79A) in his 249-career AHL games played thus far.
THE LAST TIME AROUND: In the team’s first-ever meeting on Friday night at Tucson Arena, the Roadrunners skated to a 4-1 victory. Lane Pederson scored his first professional goal, while Nick Merkley added two of his own to up his season point total to seven (4G, 3A). Marek Langhamer made 28 saves to earn his second win of the season.
WE’RE DOING IT LIVE: You can catch tonight’s action on AHL Live. Roadrunners play-by-play broadcaster Tom Callahan and color commentator Tim Gassen will have the radio call on AM 1450 Fox Sports Tucson. Radio coverage begins at 6:50 PM.