Game #36: Tucson (1) at San Diego (4)
SOG: TUC (35) – SD (30)
PP: TUC (0/3) – SD (2/3)
TUC SCORING: Dineen (2)
SD SCORING: Wideman (9pp), Comtois (1pp), Mahura (3), Sideroff (2)
ROADRUNNERS STUMBLE IN SAN DIEGO TO START WEEKEND
Opening a stint of three games in five days in California, the Roadrunners were setback Friday night in San Diego, falling 4-1 to the I-8 Rival Gulls.
The start for Tucson was one of the better parts of their game, controlling possession and weighing down the home side over 20 minutes. Goaltender Tyler Parks, who was making his second American Hockey League start after winning his first last Saturday in Colorado made a couple key stops in the midst of San Diego’s 14 first period chances, including a breakaway stop on the Gulls’ Kiefer Sherwood.
A scoreless affair would give way in the second period however, when Andy Miele’s ability to evade and Brayden Burke’s patience paved the way to setting up Cam Dineen’s second goal of the season. Tucson’s alternate captain reset the play trailing back into his own end and snuck away from a forechecking Gull before shifting the play up to Brayden Burke. Burke then eased his way along the left wing wall, delaying enough to hit a cutting Dineen on the glove-side circle, where he would snap one past Kevin Boyle.
Tucson’s well executed tally would unfortunately be their only of the night, as the tide would turn later in the second.
On the wrong side of penalty trouble, San Diego was granted a five-on-three with two pivotal Roadrunners defenseman (Aaron Ness and Dysin Mayo) in the box, one they would capitalize on twice. Once on the five-on-three and then once more on the standard power play, Tucson went from the drivers seat to trailing by one within 90 seconds.
The home team would add two more in the third following Tucson lapses and concluded the night at a 4-1 score.
Despite the outcome, Tyler Parks, who was backed up by Ivan Prosvetov, was strong over the course of the night, denying another breakaway and then a two-on-one before the final horn sounded. The 6-foot-7 goaltender suffered his first AHL loss with the four goal allowed on 30 shots.
THEY SAID IT
“I thought we played a pretty good game in the first period, we created some good offense. Then we came out in the second, started off well, got the goal to take the lead and then we got into penalty trouble. They got the goals and it felt like we were chasing after that. We didn’t get the bounce to get an equalizer so we have to rebound and luckily we have another game tomorrow.”All-Star Forward Brayden Burke sharing his assessment post-game.
DON’T OVERLOOK IT
Not quite to the same extreme but last Friday did not go in the favor of Tucson either and they bounced back beautifully Saturday. The Roadrunners struggled to create offense tonight but they certainly possess the ability to, as they entered Friday’s game tied for the league lead with 3.83 goals-per-game.
Additionally on the upside, tomorrow’s opponent, Ontario, ranks dead last in the AHL, allowing 3.87 goals-per-game.
GOTTA SEE IT
Despite the outcome, Tyler Parks was very imperative throughout, keeping his club in it with two breakaways stops and a two-on-one denial in the opening 40 minutes.
Here, his first, comes following a Tucson fumble in the attacking end but the 6-foot-7 netminder swallows it up.
Dineen’s goal was nice, Parks’ performance was solid, but another highlight of the night for Tucson was the return of forward Matteo Gennaro. After an offseason injury cost him the start to his season, the 22-year-old took the ice for the first time this season in a Roadrunners sweater this evening. Welcome back, Matteo.