Game #71 – San Jose Barracuda at Tucson Roadrunners
7:00 p.m. MST, Tucson Arena, Tucson, Arizona
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Referees: Brandon Schrader (46) Jake Kamrass (3)
Linespersons: Ryan Jackson (92) Jake Herzog (48)
The Tucson Roadrunners open the final series of the 2022-2023 regular season Friday night with the first of two contests against the San Jose Barracuda at the Tucson Arena. The Roadrunners enter the weekend with standings points in eight of their last 11 efforts and are locked into a Calder Cup Playoff spot after clinching on Saturday against the Texas Stars. Tucson and San Jose are facing off for the first time since December 3 and 4, and for the first time in the Old Pueblo since November 19 and 20. The AHL affiliate of the San Jose Sharks are directly below the Roadrunners in the Pacific Division standings at 29-34-2-5.
1) With their spot in the Playoffs already clinched, the Roadrunners are looking to finish the regular season with a winning record by earning a pair of victories over San Jose. Tucson opened the eight-game season series with a sweep of the Barracuda in San Jose on October 28 and 29, and possess a 3-2-1-0 record through six matchups on the season. Two of the Roadrunners three wins against San Jose have been by at least three goals, with the other being a 4-3 come-from-behind shootout victory to secure the sweep in San Jose on October 29. Tucson is also looking to end the year strong on their home ice with standings points in 12 of their last 16 home outings dating back to January 20.
2) Roadrunners forward Mike Carcone leads the season series between Tucson and San Jose in scoring with four goals and six assists for ten total points, while playing in just five of the first six meetings. Carcone enters the weekend series on a three-game point streak with five assists, and was named to the AHL’s 2022-2023 First All-Star Team on Thursday, becoming the first player in Roadrunners team history to do so. The 26-year-old has four multiple-point performances against San Jose on the year, including a three-point night (1g 2a) in the last series opener between the Roadrunners and Barracuda at the Tucson Arena on November 19. With two games left in the regular season, Carcone remains atop the American Hockey League with 84 points (31g 53a) in 63 games played #CarconeMVP.
3) Tucson is coming off of a strong special-teams performance on Saturday against Texas that saw them net two power-play goals and go five-for-five on the penalty-kill, marking their fourth contest this season with multiple power-play goals and a perfect penalty-kill. The Roadrunners outdrew the Barracuda in trips to the man-advantage 15 to 10 in their last weekend set in Southern Arizona November 19 and 20, scoring three power-play goals in the series opener with a season-high 10 opportunities for Tucson. The Roadrunners have earned at least a standings point in 13 of 17 home outings when scoring a goal on the man-advantage, and have an overall record of 6-0-2-0 in games with multiple power-play goals on the year. Tucson’s power-play percentage of 21.7% while on their home ice is the second best in the AHL’s Pacific Division, as they’ll take on a Barracuda team this weekend that has allowed a division-most 34 power-play goals when on the road this season.
Roadrunners Roster Moves
Thursday, April 13 – The Roadrunners signed forward Michael Lombardi to an Amateur Tryout Contract (ATO) out of Quinnipiac University.
Thursday, April 13 – The Arizona Coyotes recalled defenseman Michael Kesselring from Tucson.
Wednesday, April 12 – The Coyotes recalled forward Jan Jenik from the Roadrunners.
What’s The Word?
“Our first goal was to get to the playoffs. Step two is seeing how far we can go. We definitely want to make a push here and do the best we can to find the next level to our game.”Roadrunners Head Coach Steve Potvin on gearing up for the Playoffs with a two-game weekend series against San Jose to close out the regular season.
Number to Know
361 – The number of combined penalty minutes between the Roadrunners and Barracuda through the first six meetings on the season. Tucson and San Jose are atop the American Hockey League in total penalty minutes with 1,209 and 1,184, respectively, which sets a new Roadrunners franchise record that was previously held by their inaugural 2016-2017 team (1,126). Individually, six different Roadrunners skaters have dropped the gloves against the Barracuda.
We’re Doing It Live
Tonight’s game will be broadcast live on AHLtv, as well as on the radio on FOX Sports 1450AM and the iHeartRadio app. Coverage begins at 6:45 with Roadrunners Warm-Up hosted by Jimmy Peebles, before “Voice of the Roadrunners” Adrian Denny has all the action from the Tucson Arena.