Game #3 Preview: Tucson at Bakersfield
By: Alexander Kinkopf
October 13, 2018 10:55 AM
Game #3 – Tucson (2-0-0-0) at Bakersfield (2-1-0-0)
7:00 PM PST, Rabobank Arena, Bakersfield, California
Referees: #48 Beaudry Halkidis, #9 Anthony Tapper
Linesmen: #96 Michael McBain, #58 Matthew Jolliff
What most will hope for is continuation of the ‘feel good’ results that have come out of visits to Bakersfield over the years, but those will have to be earned with action against a Condors team that scored eight goals in its season-opening game and boasts a respectable 2-1-0-0 mark.
The Roadrunners went a perfect 4-0-0-0 at Bakersfield’s Rabobank Arena last season, including two overtime wins, and are a striking 6-1-1-0 all-time when playing at the Condors’ home arena.
Tonight marks the first of eight meetings between the clubs, and the first of Tucson’s four scheduled visits to Bakersfield. The Condors enter the night coming off two days rest, not having played since Wednesday, a 3-2 shootout win over the San Jose Barracuda.
In the midst of the first of their 27 back-to-back scenarios this season, the Roadrunners will look maintain edge, focus, and momentum despite traveling to Bakersfield after Friday’s victory. Tucson will have a total of 13 back-to-back sets on the road this season, four of which involve playing in two different cities in as many nights. Tonight presents the back-end of the first of those.
DISCIPLINE: The Roadrunners have been one of the most disciplined teams in the AHL this season, racking up a total of 12 penalty minutes through their first two games while having to play shorthanded only four times. The Condors, through eight power plays in two games on home ice this season, have executed offensively on four of them. That’s a dangerous unit to poke, albeit such a small sample size.
LET LOOSE: After registering a whopping 44 shots in their home opener last Saturday, the Roadrunners kept the pedal down for the most part in game two, firing away for 32 shots. Conor Garland, in his first game back last night, co-led the team in shots with five. Can the Roadrunners, who enter the night averaging 38 pucks on net a game, maintain their heavy shot mentality against a Condors club that has allowed only a total of 78 to their opponents in three games?
BAKERSFIELD BACKSTOP: Adin Hill, likely to get the call in net tonight following Hunter Miska’s performance Friday in San Diego, has put together an impressive portfolio at Rabobank Arena. In four career starts in the Condors’ confines, Hill is 3-0-1 with a 1.00 GAA and a .955 SV% with two shutouts (November 11, 2016 | 17/17 and October 14, 2017 | 22/22).
NUMBER TO KNOW
SIXTEEN: Through two games, 16 of the 20 skaters to have appeared in at least one game for the Roadrunners through the team’s first two contests have found the score sheet. Only four skaters, Domenic Alberga, Brayden Burke, Kyle Capobianco, and Kevin Klima, have yet to register a point. Michael Bunting (1G, 2A) leads the club with three points; eight players have two points, seven have one.
WE'RE DOING IT LIVE
You can catch tonight’s action at Brother John’s Beer Bourbon & BBQ, the official watch party location for all Roadrunners road games during the 2018-19 season. A live telecast is available on AHLTV; Roadrunners play-by-play broadcaster Adrian Denny will have the radio call on AM 1450 Fox Sports Tucson, with coverage starting at 6:45 PM.