Tucson Roadrunners Road Ahead: Meeting With Milwaukee
Upcoming Games (All times MST)
Friday, March 10: Tucson at Milwaukee, 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, March 11: Tucson at Milwaukee, 5:00 p.m.
Who’s On The Schedule
The Tucson Roadrunners head to Milwaukee to face the Admirals for their final out-of-division road trip of the season Friday, March 10 and Saturday March 11. The two-game set from the UW-Panther Arena will close out the four-game season series with the AHL affiliate of the Nashville Predators. The Roadrunners previously hosted the Admirals at the Tucson Arena January 10 and 11 with three multi-goal periods. Roadrunners forward Mike Carcone leads both teams in scoring with six points (3g 3a) over the first two games of the season series, with linemate Adam Cracknell tied for second with five points (3g 2a). Milwaukee is currently in second place in the AHL’s Central Division and will face the Iowa Wild at home on Tuesday, March 7 before hosting the Roadrunners over the weekend.
Four More In March
Following the weekend series against Milwaukee, the Roadrunners will be back in Southern Arizona for a four-game home stand at the Tucson Arena beginning on Friday, March 17. The four-game slate will see the Roadrunners take on the Calgary Wranglers March 17 and 18 before hosting the Ontario Reign for a pair of midweek contests Tuesday, March 21 and Wednesday, March 22. The series opener against the Calgary Wranglers features a Pregame Festival on the plaza outside of Tucson Arena with live music as part of Downtown Tucson’s only St. Patrick’s Day Party. Saturday, March 18 is a First Responder’s Day Doubleheader Presented by Fox Sports 1450 AM and iHeartMedia with support from the Arizona Daily Star. The Tucson Police and Fire Departments will square off in the Second Annual First Responder’s Game at 4:30 p.m. MST before the Roadrunners host the AHL affiliate of the Calgary Flames that evening at 7:00 p.m. MST. The midweek series against the Ontario Reign will have the final $2 Twos-Day and Kids Free Wednesday of the season, as Tucson will face off with the AHL affiliate of the Los Angeles Kings.
Extra Hockey At Home
Tucson opened the month of March at home with a pair of games against their I-8 Border Rivals, the San Diego Gulls. The Roadrunners earned standings points in both games as they went to overtime in back-to-back nights for the first time since December 9 and 10 at home against Ontario. The two-game set represented the first one-goal games of the season between Tucson and San Diego, and their first matchups to go past regulation since the Roadrunners defeated the Gulls 3-2 in a shootout to close out the 2021-2022 campaign on April 29, 2022. Tucson forward Mike Carcone lit the lamp on Friday with his team-leading 26th goal of the season, as the 26-year-old recorded seven shots on goal in both contests.
Eight Is Great
With their pair of overtime contests against the San Diego Gulls at the Tucson Arena over the weekend, the Roadrunners extended their active unbeaten streak on home ice to eight-straight games. The mark matches a franchise record for the most consecutive home outings where the Roadrunners earned a standings point, which was first achieved in the 2017-2018 season and last done in 2019-2020. During that stretch, Tucson has outscored their opponents 29-16 with a 6-0-2-0 record. The Roadrunners have also gone ten-straight home games without losing by more than one goal, with a 7-1-2-0 record since a 6-2 win over the Bakersfield Condors at the Tucson Arena on January 20.
Denying The Competition
The Roadrunners and goaltenders Ivan Prosvetov and Tyler Parks have combined to hold their opponents to two goals or less through regulation in six consecutive games, a streak that was last achieved by Tucson in March of 2019. Prosvetov has started in net for five of the six games during that span for a 3-0-2 record and a .929 (145-for-156) save percentage. Over his last 11 starts overall, the 24-year-old has gone 6-3-2 on his way to setting a new career high for wins in a season with 16. With 125 total outings since his rookie campaign in 2019-2020, Prosvetov is the longest-tenured member of the Roadrunners and is nine appearances away from matching the team record for games played by a goalie. Drafted in 2018 (round 4 – #114 overall) by the Arizona Coyotes, Prosvetov celebrated his 24th birthday on Sunday, March 5.
Nice To Meet You
Three players made their Roadrunners debuts over the two-game weekend set against the San Diego Gulls at the Tucson Arena. Defenseman Noah Laaouan took the ice for Tucson on Friday, March 3 after being recalled from the ECHL’s Atlanta Gladiators and recorded two shots on goal in his first game as a Roadrunner. The 21-year-old is in his first professional campaign after five seasons in the QMJHL and has notched 20 points (7g 13a) in 52 games with Atlanta this year. Forward Michal Mrazik was also added from Atlanta and made his Roadrunners debut on Saturday, March 4. Defenseman Michael Kesselring made his first appearance for Tucson on Saturday as well, after making his National Hockey League debut with the Arizona Coyotes on Friday. The 23-year-old was acquired by Arizona from the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday and is tied for second in the AHL in goals by defensemen with 13. In addition, forward Reece Vitelli made his home debut after taking the ice for Tucson on the road against the Texas Stars December 30 and 31.
Forwards And Fisticuffs
Saturday’s series finale between the Roadrunners and San Diego Gulls featured three fights through the first 40 minutes, with all three involving Tucson forwards. Colin Theisen was the first to drop the gloves with 7:33 remaining in the first period, as he took on San Diego’s Evan Weinger for his first professional fight. Linemates Mike Carcone and Adam Cracknell followed up Theisen with fights of their own over the final 4:04 of Saturday’s second period. Carcone took on Gulls defenseman Quinn Wichers for his fourth fight of the season against the fourth different team, while Cracknell exchanged blows with San Diego blue-liner Nikolas Brouillard for his second time dropping the gloves this season.
Did You Know?
Tucson’s penalty-kill unit has continued to impress since the turn of the calendar year, moving up a total of ten spots in the league rankings since late December after going a perfect three-for-three against San Diego’s man-advantage over the weekend. Saturday’s series finale marked the third-straight home game for Tucson without a power-play goal allowed and their fifth consecutive contest overall with a perfect penalty-kill, matching a season high. The Roadrunners have allowed four opponent power-plays or less in each of their last ten home games dating back to January 20, and have taken three trips to the penalty-kill or less in five of their last six outings overall.
Roadrunners Up The I-10
Friday’s Arizona Coyotes lineup against the Carolina Hurricanes at Mullett Arena featured 10 current or former Tucson Roadrunners skaters. Over Arizona’s weekend of games against the Carolina Hurricanes on Friday and the New Jersey Devils on Sunday, Roadrunners alumni accounted for two goals and four assists. Forward Lawson Crouse, who appeared in 56 games for Tucson in 2017-2018, secured his second-straight season with 20 or more goals Friday when he found the back of the net with assists from JJ Moser and Victor Soderstrom. Soderstrom tallied an assist in both outings over the weekend for the second point streak of his National Hockey League career. Tucson’s leading scorer from last year, Matias Maccelli, scored a goal on Sunday to move into third place in scoring among NHL rookies with 31 points (5g 26a). In addition, forward Milos Kelemen and defensemen Vlad Kolyachonok and Michael Kesselring all took the ice for Tucson the following night against San Diego.
On The Air
When the Roadrunners return home to host the Calgary Wranglers at the Tucson Arena on their next home stand, the series finale on Saturday, March 18 will be the fifth game this season to be televised live in Southern Arizona on The CW Tucson. In the meantime, Tucson Roadrunners Happy Hour airs every Tuesday at 5 p.m. on FOX Sports 1450AM and the iHeartRadio app, with a podcast version also available after each episode on the iHeartRadio app. This week, co-hosts Brett Fera and Kim Cota-Robles will be joined by Tucson.com’s James Kelley and a carousel of Roadrunners players from Tucson’s Season Ticket Member Signing Event. In addition, a new episode of the Tucson Roadrunners Insider Podcast released on Sunday night, as “Voice of the Roadrunners” Adrian Denny and TucsonRoadrunners.com’s Jimmy Peebles discussed the weekend series with San Diego and heard clips from Tucson Head Coach Steve Potvin, Arizona Coyotes Head Coach André Tourigny, and more. The podcast can be found on the iHeartRadio App or at TucsonRoadrunners.com/Podcast.