Game #3 – Bakersfield Condors at Tucson Roadrunners
7:00 p.m. MST, Tucson Arena, Tucson, Arizona
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Referees: Mike Sullivan (89) Cody Beach (45)
Linespersons: Jake Herzog (48) Robert Fay (32)
The Roadrunners are back at the Tucson Arena Saturday night to host the Bakersfield Condors as part of Opening Night presented by the Arizona Daily Star. The day starts with the traditional Roadrunners Red Carpet Reception at 4 p.m. to welcome the players back, followed by puck drop at 7 p.m. There will be a Food Drive for Impact of Southern Arizona, and the first 1,500 fans to arrive can receive a Roadrunners Rally Towel courtesy of Williams & Associates. Tucson enters the weekend with a 1-1-0-0 record after splitting the opening series of the season in Henderson against the Silver Knights, while Bakersfield is off to a 2-0-1-0 record to start the year.
1) Tucson will be looking to win their first game at the Tucson Arena for the fifth-consecutive season against the fifth different opponent. The Roadrunners have an all-time record of 5-1 in the opening game in the Old Pueblo and have outscored their opponents by a count of 32-19. In their Home Opener last season, Tucson took down the Texas Stars 4-0, fueled by a Ben McCartney hat trick. The Roadrunners opened the season the year before with a 2-1 overtime victory against the San Jose Barracuda. Ivan Prosvetov was in net for both victories and stopped 55 of 56 total shots faced.
2) The Bakersfield Condors are back in Tucson for the first time since January 29, 2022. In that game, the Roadrunners overcame a late 2-0 deficit to force overtime with the Edmonton Oilers AHL affiliate. Tucson forward Ben McCartney came through with just 50 seconds gone by in overtime for the game-winning goal to close out the home stand. The Roadrunners are 4-1-0-0 all-time against Bakersfield in the first matchup of the season series. Saturday will also be Tucson Captain Adam Cracknell’s first game against his former team, after the 37-year-old spent each of the last two seasons with the Condors.
3) A Roadrunners standout looking to make his season debut in Tucson’s Home Opener for the second-straight campaign is forward Ben McCartney. McCartney is back for his second full season in the organization after finishing last year in the top five for goals (18) assists (17) and total points (35). The 21-year-old made his mark in last year’s Home Opener against the Texas Stars on October 23, 2021, with the first hat trick of his professional career. McCartney was one of eight Roadrunners that made their NHL debuts last season with the Arizona Coyotes, and did so alongside defenseman Cam Dineen on November 5, 2021.
What’s The Word?
“This is year seven in pro hockey for me. Even going into the [Henderson] games last weekend, I still get butterflies… it’s going to be the same this weekend. We’ll have our fans in the stands, it’s going to be fun to be back and I’m excited for it. It doesn’t matter if you’re a first-year pro or you’re (Roadrunners Captain Adam Cracknell) playing in his 1,000th game, it’s a great experience.”Roadrunners forward Mike Carcone on the feeling of starting a new season of hockey. The 26-year-old enters his third year in the organization after leading Tucson in goals in each of the last two seasons.
Number to Know
2 – The number of points recorded by forward Laurent Dauphin in his last Tucson Home Opener on October 6, 2018. Dauphin notched a goal and an assist in a 6-4 victory to begin his most recent season as a Roadrunner. The 27-year-old signed a one-year, two-way contract with the Arizona Coyotes this offseason to return to the organization that drafted him 39th overall in 2013.
We’re Doing It Live
Today’s game will be broadcast live on AHLtv, as well as on the radio on FOX Sports 1450AM and the iHeartRadio app. Coverage will start at 6:45 p.m. with Roadrunners Warm-Up hosted by Jimmy Peebles, before “Voice of the Roadrunners” Adrian Denny has all the action from the Tucson Arena.