Game #21 Preview: Tucson vs. San Jose
By: Alexander Kinkopf
December 12, 2017 12:06 PM
Game #21 – Tucson (12-5-2-1) vs. San Jose (9-10-0-1)
7:05 PM MST, Tucson Arena, Tucson, Arizona
Referees: #45 Peter MacDougall, #6 Conor O’Donnell
Linesmen: #58 Colin Besch, #30 Ken Bonham
BACK IN TOWN: Tonight marks the second of eight meetings with the Barracuda this season, and the first of San Jose’s four scheduled visits to Tucson Arena. The Roadrunners are playing the first of a two-game road trip; they’re coming off of a 5-2 loss to the Stockton Heat Saturday night. The Barracuda are playing the first of a two-game road trip; they haven’t played since Friday night.
CAPOBIANCO BACK: Kyle Capobianco, who was assigned to the Roadrunners by the Coyotes on Monday, was with the team this morning and is expected to return to the lineup. He has missed the club’s last three games during his time with Arizona. In 17 games with the Roadrunners this season, he’s registered 14 points (2G, 12A).
KEEP ‘EM QUIET: The Barracuda have scored a combined one goal in their previous two games, both losses. They are ranked 28th offensively in the AHL with an average of 2.50 goals scored per game. The Roadrunners enter the evening with the league’s sixth-best defense, the club surrendering an average of 2.75 goals per game to opponents.
PROJECTED LINEUP: The team held a morning skate ahead of tonight’s game at Tucson Arena. Per club policy, specifics regarding the team’s lineup will not be published until 5:00 PM this evening.
MICHAEL BUNTING (27) - MARIO KEMPE (20) - MIKE SISLO (9)
TYE MCGINN (16) - RYAN MACINNIS (72) - MICHAEL LATTA (46)
EMERSON ETEM (26) - TYLER GAUDET (10) - CONOR GARLAND (8)
TREVOR CHEEK (39) - LANE PEDERSON (18) - JENS LOOKE (24)
ANDREW CAMPBELL (2) - DAKOTA MERMIS (43)
JOEL HANLEY (44) - DYSIN MAYO (37)
KYLE CAPOBIANCO (23) - KYLE WOOD (3)
HUNTER MISKA (35)
ADIN HILL (33)
MISSING MERKLEY: The Roadrunners will be without Nick Merkley for the next two games as he serves a two-game suspension as consequence for a high-sticking incident Saturday night in Stockton. Merkley has not missed a game all season; he leads all active players on the roster in scoring with 24 points (12G, 12A).
THE LAST TIME AROUND: In the teams’ first meeting of the season on Friday night at SAP Center, the Roadrunners defeated the Barracuda by a 3-1 score. Michael Bunting scored two goals, while Mike Sislo added the other for Tucson. Hunter Miska stopped 33 of 34 shots faced to earn the win.
HOT STICKS: Michael Bunting enters the evening with points in his last four games, accumulating six (2G, 4A) during that span. Tyler Gaudet enters the night with a four-game point streak as well (1G, 3A).
RECLAIMING FIRST: The Roadrunners fell out of first place in the Pacific Division for the first time since October 27 following their 5-2 loss to the Stockton Heat on Saturday night. With the Heat not scheduled to play tonight, the Roadrunners can again reclaim the top spot in the division with a win over the Barracuda.
WE’RE DOING IT LIVE: You can catch tonight’s action on AHL Live. Roadrunners play-by-play broadcaster Tom Callahan, along with color commentator Tim Gassen, will have the radio call on AM 1450 Fox Sports Tucson. Radio coverage begins at 6:50 PM.