Game #6 Preview: Tucson vs. Rockford
By: Alexander Kinkopf
October 20, 2018 12:16 PM
Game #6 – Tucson (4-0-0-1) vs. Rockford (2-2-1-0)
7:05 PM PST, Tucson Arena, Tucson, Arizona
Referees: #39 Brandon Blandina, #23 Jonathan Sitarski
Linesmen: #30 Ken Bonham, #59 Rob Fay
In immediate transition from Friday night’s 4-3 overtime win, the Roadrunners will complete their back-to-back set against the Rockford IceHogs tonight at Tucson Arena. It will mark the second of four scheduled meetings between the teams this season; the Roadrunners will play two at Rockford’s BMO Harris Bank Center on February 8 and 9.
Now 2-0-0-0 on home ice and 4-0-0-1 overall, the Roadrunners continue their franchise trend of coming hot out of the gate. All-time during the month of October, the club is now 13-2-1-1 overall and 6-1-0-0 at home.
The Roadrunners are one of only five teams in the AHL to be without a regulation loss this season, joining the likes of the Charlotte Checkers, Springfield Thunderbirds, Chicago Wolves, and San Jose Barracuda.
The IceHogs are without a win on the road this year (0-2-1-0).
Following tonight’s affair, the Roadrunners will venture out on a four-game road trip, returning to host the San Diego Gulls on Wednesday, November 7. They’ll go 17 days between home dates.
HELEWKA’S HOT: Adam Helewka was a valuable offensive asset yet again Friday, scoring a goal and dishing out an assist to record his second multi-point game of the season. The 23-year-old forward, acquired in June from the San Jose Sharks, has been held without a point only once this year, and enters the night leading the Roadrunners in points (6) and goals scored (5). Helewka’s five markers are tied for second-most among all AHL players.
LOOKE OUT!: Jens Looke, returning to Tucson’s lineup Friday after missing three games due to an undisclosed injury, racked up two assists, including the primary helper on Conor Garland’s overtime winner, now has four points (2G, 2A) in two games played this season. The Gavle, Sweden native is on pace to shatter his 17-point (6G, 11A) total he amassed in 59 games played during the 2017-18 campaign.
CLOSE CALLS: Four of the Roadrunners five games played thus far have been decided by one goal, all of them have involved one goal leads or deficits during the third period. The Roadrunners earned points in 26 of their 34 games decided by one goal last season, a 20-8-5-1 record. Can the team continue its ability to find ways to win close games?
NUMBER TO KNOW
NINE-HUNDRED: The Roadrunners’ .900 win percentage is tied with the San Jose Barracuda for the second-best in the American Hockey League. Translating into what is the team’s 4-0-0-1 record, it stands as the best five-game start to a season in franchise history.
WE’RE DOING IT LIVE
Catch tonight’s action LIVE on AHLTV or join Roadrunners play-by-play broadcaster Adrian Denny on AM 1450 Fox Sports Tucson as he calls the game from the Roadrunners’ flagship radio station, where coverage begins at 6:50 PM.