Last Week Today: Midseason Mettle
By: Alexander Kinkopf
January 14, 2018 6:54 PM
Twice the Roadrunners played in games that gripped the power, if the result were a loss, to see them surrender first place. They won both of those contests.
Three games, two wins, the return of a familiar face, and the debut of a new one. All in a week's work.
Albeit not a perfect trip for a team that’s facing a saturated schedule with a plethora of road commitments lying in wait, they posted a 2-1-0-0 record, earning four of a possible six points – all against division opponents.
The team rattled off three third period goals Wednesday night in Northern California, topping the Stockton Heat by a 4-2 score. In earning a win at Stockton Arena, the Roadrunners have been victorious on at least one occasion in all seven opposing buildings they’ve played in this season.
Friday night? Not so hot. The Roadrunners witnessed the Ontario Reign bust out for four goals in the second period, setting the tone for the evening’s eventual 6-4 loss.
With first place on the line yet again Saturday night in San Diego, the Roadrunners overcame a two-goal deficit in responding with four unanswered of their own to defeat the Gulls by a 4-2 score.
Dylan Strome registered three points (2G, 1A) in the win at San Diego, the sixth time he's done so in 24 games played. In finishing the week with a total of 37 points (16G, 21A), Strome is fourth in the AHL in scoring. He's played in 15 fewer games than the number three and two players on that list, and 12 less than the top name. He's averaging 1.54 points per game, the highest median among players who have dressed in 20 or more games.
The club’s 10-3-1-1 road record, addressed as a .733 win percentage, is second best in the Western Conference and ranked fourth in the AHL. They outscored their opponents by a 7-2 count in third periods during the week, and are currently a maginificent +18 in the final frame of regulation this season.
Laurent Dauphin, acquired in a trade from the Chicago Blackhawks Wednesday, returned to the Roadrunners lineup Friday and put up a total of three points (1G, 2A) in his two games played during the weekend.
Where They Stand:
Record: 19-11-2-1 (.621 win %)
Pacific Division: 1st Place
Western Conference: 2nd Place
League: 8th Place
The Week That Was:
Wednesday, January 10
Roadrunners (4) at Heat (2)
Friday, January 12
Roadrunners (4) at Reign (6)
Citizens Business Bank Arena
Saturday, January 13
Roadrunners (4) at Gulls (2)
Valley View Casino Center
Up & Down
Recalls (TUC --> ARI)
Assignments (ARI --> TUC)
Alumni in Action:
Christian Fischer shuffled home his 12th goal of the season Saturday night at SAP Center – he’s second on the Coyotes in goals scored behind Clayton Keller, who's buried 14. Upon receiving a neutral zone pass in stride from Kevin Connauton, Fischer hustled and fled in alone to beat San Jose’s Martin Jones, chasing the Sharks’ goaltender from the game late in the first period.
On Thursday, Hockey Canada announced its men’s roster for the 2018 Olympics. Former Roadrunner Justin Peters was one of three goaltenders selected. Peters, who started the first game in franchise history on October 14, 2016 in San Diego, posted a 5-6-0 record in 12 games during the team’s inaugural campaign. He currently plays for Kolner Haie (Cologne Sharks) of the DEL (German Elite League).
Emerson Etem signed with HC Lugano on Sunday, a team that plays in Switzerland’s National League. Etem registered five points (4G, 1A) in 16 games with the Roadrunners this season.
Highlight of the Week:
Locked in a 2-2 tie with the Gulls in the third period Saturday night, Dylan Strome, stationed smack-dab on the right circle as the Roadrunners drew up a power play sequence, received a pass from Kyle Capobianco and unloaded a seeing-eye wrist shot high and tight past Reto Berra for his second goal of the game.
Photo of the Week:
Andrew Campbell sprawls out to block a Gulls pass attempt in the third period of the Roadrunners’ 4-2 victory Saturday night at the Valley View Casino Center. (Credit: S. Sidell – San Diego Gulls)