By: Alex Kinkopf
October 28, 2016 12:39 PM
Game #4 – Tucson (2-1-0-0) vs Stockton (3-0-1-0)
7:05 PM MST, Tucson Arena, Tucson, Arizona
Referees: #33 Reid Anderson, #40 Keith Kaval
Linesmen: #30 Ken Bonham, #81 Travis Smith
WELCOME HOME: Tonight marks the second of eight meetings with Stockton this season, and the first of the Heat’s four scheduled visits to Tucson Arena. Stockton is playing the second of a three-game road trip; they’re coming off of a 7-5 win over the San Diego Gulls Wednesday night. The Roadrunners are starting a five-game home stand; they’re coming off of a 2-1 win over the Bakersfield Condors on Saturday night.
HOT HOT HEAT: Stockton comes into the night sitting atop the Pacific Division with a 3-0-1-0 record and seven points. The Heat’s lone loss, albeit in overtime, came at the hands of the Roadrunners a week ago today when Brendan Perlini secured the first win for Tucson in franchise history. Stockton is averaging four goals per game; the Heat are coming off of a seven-goal performance on Wednesday.
LINEUP: The Roadrunners held a 10:00 AM morning skate in anticipation of tonight’s game. Adin Hill was the first goaltender to leave the ice, so he is expected to get the start. Forwards Stefan Fournier, Matia Marcantuoni and Trevor Cheek remained on the ice for extra work with defensemen Justin Hache and Dysin Mayo; those players are likely tonight’s healthy scratches. Zbynek Michalek did not take the ice and his status is unclear. Tonight’s defensive pairings and forward groupings should look as such (scratches):
BRENDAN PERLINI – CHRIS MUELLER – CRAIG CUNNINGHAM
MICHAEL BUNTING – TYLER GAUDET – CHRISTIAN FISCHER
GARRET ROSS – RYAN MACINNIS – CONOR GARLAND
ERIC SELLECK – MARK OLVER – HENRIK SAMUELSSON
(STEFAN FOURNIER – MATIA MARCANTUONI – TREVOR CHEEK)
BRANDON BURLON – JAMIE MCBAIN
JARRED TINORDI – ANTHONY DEANGELO
DAKOTA MERMIS – KYLE WOOD
(JUSTIN HACHE – DYSIN MAYO)
BIG SAM: Henrik Samuelsson, who has missed the first three games of the season due to an undisclosed lower-body injury he suffered in September, will likely return to Mark Lamb’s lineup tonight. Samuelsson has been practicing with the team throughout the week, skating on the right side of Eric Selleck and Mark Olver on the team’s fourth-line unit. In 43 games with the Springfield Falcons last season, Samuelsson registered 12 points (3G, 9A).
HILL VS HEAT: Adin Hill is expected to make his second start of the season tonight against Stockton. In his Roadrunners debut last Saturday against the Bakersfield Condors, Hill stopped 31 of 32 shots faced in Tucson’s 2-1 victory. Hill was in net for the Roadrunners’ preseason game against the Heat on October 7, where he made 34 saves in a 3-2 loss. Hill, however, was lauded as ‘the most noticeable player on the ice’ by Stockton’s play-by-play broadcaster, Brandon Kisker.
THE LAST TIME AROUND: In the previous meeting between these two clubs on October 21 at Stockton Arena, the Roadrunners came away with a 2-1 win in overtime. Stockton’s Brandon Bollig opened the scoring midway through the contest, but it would be the only goal allowed by Roadrunners netminder Marek Langhamer, who stopped 43 of 44 shots faced. Craig Cunningham knotted the score 1-1 early in the third period, and Brendan Perlini pocketed the two points for Tucson with his goal 3:19 into the extra frame.
10 THINGS TO KNOW: Get down to Tucson Arena early for tonight’s pregame festivities, which begin at 5:00 PM. Doors open to the public at 5:30, and all fans in attendance are encouraged to be in their seats by 6:30 for tonight’s pregame ceremonies and player introductions.
WE’RE DOING IT LIVE: You can catch tonight’s action on AHLLive.com. 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.