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Roadrunners slip in 4-1 loss to Grand Rapids

By: Alexander Kinkopf
The Roadrunners fell to the Grand Rapids Griffins by a 4-1 score Saturday night at Tucson Arena.
“That’s a tough team to come back against when you give them four goals,” Mike Van Ryn said afterward. “We didn’t generate a whole lot tonight. I thought the guys that came in and played for us played well. Our power play has to generate a bit more for us, and that’s really it.”
Grand Rapids built a two-goal lead within the first 10 minutes of the contest.
With 6:53 left to play in the opening frame, Lawson Crouse buried his 12th goal of the season, cutting the Roadrunners’ deficit in half when he spun and beat Grand Rapids’ Tom McCollum up-high with a shot from in close.
Crouse’s goal extended his season-long point-streak to five games, the longest current stretch on the team.
The Griffins responded with another two goals in the first half of the second period, upping their lead to 4-1.
Hunter Miska was pulled following Grand Rapids’ fourth goal; he stopped 14 of the 18 shots he faced in 30:00 minutes of action.
Adin Hill came in for relief, turning away all five shots he faced in the final 30:00 minutes of play, but the Roadrunners were unable to chip away offensively.
“Obviously it really wasn’t the result that we wanted, but we battled hard,” Lawson Crouse said. “We had a couple of mental and physical collapses out there, and that’s stuff that we can learn from and be better for next time.”
With the Ontario Reign’s 3-2 loss to the San Diego Gulls, the Roadrunners’ magic number to clinch the Pacific Division title falls to 1.
The team will take on the San Diego Gulls on Wednesday night at the Valley View Casino Center, where the puck is scheduled to drop just after 7:00 PM PST.
Photos courtesy: Chris Hook