Game #20 – Tucson (15-4-0-0) at San Diego (7-9-1-0)

8 PM MST, Pechanga Arena – San Diego, CA

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The Pacific Division-leading Roadrunners wrap up their two-game California trip this evening against their I-8 Border Rival, the San Diego Gulls, AHL affiliate of the Anaheim Ducks.

Similar to Wednesday’s affair against Bakersfield, it’ll be the first meeting of the season between the two sides.  Far and away the latest first meeting of the season between the two sides, Tucson and San Diego had met for all three of the Roadrunners regular season openers until this season. 

After going 2-10 against the Gulls in the club’s inaugural year, the team has claimed the I-8 Border Rivalry Trophy both of the past two years, winning the season series by a combined 13-6-0-1.

Three Things

1) Yet another outstanding offensive output Wednesday night in Bakersfield raised some more eyebrows from around the AHL landscape.  Typically when two teams meet for the first time in a season, the opening 20 minutes is a “feeling out” process, gauging the opponents style of play, structure, systems, etc.  As we know, this wasn’t the case for Tucson in the contest.  For just the second time in team history the guys scored five in a 20-minute span en route to registering eight goals total for the third time already this season.  Now, of course we know that this roster is filled with talent and many individuals can fill the net at will, but kudos to the coaching staff for having the team prepared and ready to go against the Condors.  Sure, some of the eight goals were results from Bakersfield mistakes; however, the preparation displayed to take advantage of some of the Condors attempts proved evident and is a large testament to how well-prepared Jay Varady, John Slaney, Steve Potvin and Brady Morgan have the group.

2) Anyone who has ever had the privilege of meeting defenseman Dysin Mayo can likely attest to the fact that it’s hard not to root for the humble, kind person that doubles as a fantastic hockey player.  Entering this season on a new, one-year contract from the Coyotes, Mayo noted that he knew he wanted to provide in a big way with it being his fourth-year in Tucson along with Calder Cup Champion and big minute-logger Robbie Russo and the up-and-coming Jordan Gross on the right side as well.  While both of the aforementioned two are having nice starts to the season of their own, Mayo is contributing on the score sheet at a historic rate.  On pace for a career-high in all scoring categories, #37 had his second three-point game of the year on Wednesday, something he had not accomplished in his 163 games before this season.  Oh, and he leads the entire AHL at a +19 too.

3) What more can be said about first-year netminder Ivan Prosvetov?  Starts the year with a terrific few games in Tucson, gets reassigned to the ECHL for Eric Comrie’s Tucson conditioning assignment, and then returns to the AHL level with his first start in 25 days picking up right where he left off.  In regards to tonight in San Diego, one would have to think that Adin Hill will now take his turn in the crease.  At 6-2 this season, the 23-year-old has been strong in goal once again.

What’s The Word?

Roadrunners goaltender Ivan Prosvetov sharing his retrospective thoughts on Wednesday’s 8-3 win in Bakersfield…

“It feels great to be back here.  It’s nice to be back in the battle.  I thought we did a good job Wednesday, obviously scored a lot of goals. It was an offensive game and they had a chance to come back in the second but we calmed it down.”

Roadrunners goaltender Ivan Prosvetov on earning a win when seeing 39 shots…

“That’s my job.  If I see a lot of shots in an offensive game, it’s my job to stop them.  We scored a lot of goals tonight but our defense also did a nice job of blocking shots.  I’m really happy about the job they did.

Roadrunners goaltender Ivan Prosvetov on his combined 8-2 start to the season with Tucson and Rapid City (ECHL)…

“So far, everyone’s been good to me.  Both teams have been great to be a part of.  It’s been easy to be a goalie for both.  The amount of time that both have spent in the offensive zone has really helped me a lot.”

Number to Know

7.  After having no points through the team’s first ten games, forward Hudson Fasching has flipped the switch and has a chance to extend his personal point streak to a team-high seven games tonight.  Since November 15, #24 has five goals and five assists, good for ten points in six games.  

We’re Doing It Live

Catch tonight’s active LIVE on AHLTV or join Roadrunners play-by-play voice Adrian Denny on Fox Sports 1450 AM and iHeart Radio as he calls the game from the Roadrunners’ flagship radio station, where coverage begins at 7:45 PM.