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NEWS

Game #11 Preview: Tucson vs Manitoba

By: Alex Kinkopf
 
Game #11 – Tucson (7-1-2-0) vs Manitoba (7-5-0-1)
7:05 PM MST, Tucson Arena, Tucson, Arizona
LISTEN LIVE | WATCH LIVE | BOX SCORE
Referees: #19 Tim Mayer, #17 Peter Tarnaris
Linesmen: #30 Ken Bonham, #81 Travis Smith
 
 
NORTH TO SOUTH: Tonight marks the first of four meetings with the Moose this season, and the first of Manitoba’s two scheduled visits to Tucson Arena. Manitoba is on the last leg of a five-game road trip where they’ve posted a 1-2-0-0 record thus far; they’re coming off of a 4-1 win over the Bakersfield Condors on Wednesday. The Roadrunners are starting a season-long six-game home stand; they’re coming off of a 3-2 OT loss to the Bakersfield Condors last Saturday.
 
 
FIRST (PLACE) AND FOREMOST: The Roadrunners come into the night first overall in the AHL, the team’s 7-1-2-0 record good for a .800 win percentage. Can they maintain that positioning with a win against the Moose tonight?
 
LINEUP: The Roadrunners held a morning skate in anticipation of tonight’s game. Christian Dvorak, Stefan Fournier, Dysin Mayo, and Zbynek Michalek remained on the ice for extra work and are the presumed healthy scratches. Both goaltenders left the ice at the same time, so tonight’s starting netminder is unknown. The team skated Friday morning in the following groups/pairs:
 
FORWARDS
BRENDAN PERLINI – CHRIS MUELLER – CRAIG CUNNINGHAM
CHRISTIAN FISCHER – TYLER GAUDET – CONOR GARLAND
MICHAEL BUNTING – RYAN MACINNIS – HENRIK SAMUELSSON
ERIC SELLECK – MARK OLVER – GARRET ROSS
(CHRISTIAN DVORAK – STEFAN FOURNIER)
 
DEFENSEMEN
JARRED TINORDI – KYLE WOOD
DAKOTA MERMIS – JAMIE MCBAIN
JUSTIN HACHE – BRANDON BURLON
(DYSIN MAYO – ZBYNEK MICHALEK)
 
GOALTENDERS
ADIN HILL
JUSTIN PETERS
 
CREASE CONDUNDRUM: Friday night’s starting goaltender will be known once the team takes the ice for warm-ups. Adin Hill and Justin Peters left the ice at the same time following the morning skate, so no answers were provided as to which will get the call in net. Hill has made eight straight starts, and in that span, has posted a 6-0-2 record with a 2.70 GAA and a .917 SV%. Justin Peters made 43 saves in the Roadrunners’ opening night 5-3 loss to the San Diego Gulls on October 14.
 
HOT TRIO: The first line combination of Brendan Perlini, Chris Mueller, and Craig Cunningham has been on a roll of late, the group combining for 16 points (5G, 11A) in the team’s last four games. “I’m just trying to get open, Mueller can dish, and Cunny’s a really good player too, I think our chemistry is really growing out there,” Perlini said of the line’s recent success on Thursday.
 
FISCHER’S DELIGHT: Christian Fischer is expected to return to the lineup Friday night after missing the previous two games with an undisclosed injury. Before being sidelined, Fischer registered points in five straight games, amassing two goals and three assists in that span. The 19 year-old forward will likely skate on the left side of Tyler Gaudet and Conor Garland on the team’s second line.
 
 
SPECIAL STUFF: The Roadrunners carry the league’s third-best power play unit into the game, chiming in with a 27.1% success rate. Tucson’s penalty kill has also allowed the fewest amount of goals in the league, surrendering only four. The Moose, however, have scored four shorthanded goals this season – the most by any team in the league.
 
WE’RE DOING IT LIVE: You can catch tonight’s action on AHL Live. Roadrunners play-by-play broadcaster Tom Callahan will have the radio call on AM 1450 KTZR, which can be listened to for free HERE. Callahan’s radio coverage of tonight’s contest will begin at 6:50 PM MST.