By: Alex Kinkopf
November 30, 2016 10:22 PM
Apart from the tremendous support shown for Craig Cunningham by San Diego’s fan base, Wednesday wasn’t a particularly good night for the Roadrunners in their 5-1 loss to the Gulls at the Valley View Casino Center.
“We were flat, that was by far the worst game that we’ve played this year,” said Head Coach Mark Lamb. “We couldn’t kill penalties, we couldn’t defend, there weren’t a lot of positives in the game tonight, and it was a complete team effort right from the goaltender out.”
As play-by-play broadcaster Tom Callahan mentioned during the waning moments of the evening, “it felt like a Wednesday.”
That, it did.
If you’re digging deep for a positive from Wednesday’s affair, one can be found in Conor Garland’s first-career professional goal, which he scored 11:32 into the contest to give the Roadrunners a 1-0 lead.
Matia Marcantuoni dug a puck out of the corner of San Diego’s zone, fed Zbynek Michalek atop the point, who’s shot ricochet off of a stick in the slot and found Garland, who was situated with a wide-open net on the back-door.
“It’s always nice to score your first professional goal,” Lamb said of Garland’s marker. “I thought he was one of the guys – of the very few – that played hard and had a real good game. He was buzzing all around; he was around the chances a little bit. So, good for him, and hopefully it’s better times ahead and more points coming.”
San Diego responded to tie the game less than two minutes after Garland’s opening tally, and ran away with four more unanswered goals to skate to an eventual 5-1 victory.
For the Roadrunners, it was just the club’s second regulation loss away from home – both of those have come at the hands of the Gulls at the Valley View Casino Center.
Even with the loss, Tucson remains in first place in the Pacific Division with a 9-3-2-0 record.
Goaltender Adin Hill made 24 saves in the loss; Hill surrendered five goals in a single game for just the second time this season.
Forward Matia Marcantuoni and defenseman Zbynek Michalek each registered their first points of the season with their assists on Conor Garland’s first period goal.
Thursday presents a day of travel for the Roadrunners; they are set to take on the Ontario Reign Friday night, and the Bakersfield Condors on Saturday evening.