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Game #49 Preview: Tucson vs. San Antonio

By: Alexander Kinkopf
 
 
Game #49 – Tucson (29-16-2-1) vs. San Antonio (26-21-7-0)
7:05 PM MST, Tucson Arena, Tucson, Arizona
Referees: #27 Ben O’Quinn, #48 Chris Schlenker
Linesmen: #90 Mike Sarter, #20 Brent Hooks
 
BEFORE LEAVING: Tonight marks the fourth and final meeting with the Rampage this season, and the second of San Antonio’s two scheduled visits to Tucson Arena. The Roadrunners are playing the final of a four-game home stand; the Rampage are playing the 10th of a 12-game road trip. Both clubs are coming off of a meeting Friday night in which the Roadrunners won in overtime, 2-1.
 
 
RAMPAGE ON REPEAT: The Roadrunners have defeated the Rampage 2-1 in overtime in all three of the teams’ meetings so far this season; twice in San Antonio at the AT&T Center on January 19 & 20, and Friday night at Tucson Arena. Mario Kempe, Lawson Crouse, and Mike Sislo have each buried overtime game-winners against the Rampage this year.
 
 
NINE IN THE CLUTCH: Mike Sislo, credited with his second overtime game-winning goal of the year Friday night, is now tied with Nick Merkley for the most game-winning goals scored by a Roadrunners player this season – each has netted five. Sislo has points in 18 of the Roadrunners’ last 23 games, and enters the night with 34 (17G, 17A) on the season.
 
PROJECTED LINEUP: The team held an optional morning skate at Tucson Arena ahead of tonight’s game. Per club policy, specifics regarding the team’s lineup will not be published until 5:00 PM this afternoon.
 
FORWARDS
MICHAEL BUNTING (27) - DYLAN STROME (91) - MIKE SISLO (9)
LAWSON CROUSE (67) -  MARIO KEMPE (20) - LANE PEDERSON (18)
TYE MCGINN (16) - RYAN MACINNIS (72) - JENS LOOKE (24)
RYAN KUJAWINSKI (17) - TYLER GAUDET (10) - DANIEL MAGGIO (47)
 
DEFENSEMEN
JOEL HANLEY (44) - DYSIN MAYO (37)
ANDREW CAMPBELL (2) - JOHN RAMAGE (55)
DAKOTA MERMIS (43) - KYLE WOOD (3)
 
GOALTENDERS
ADIN HILL (33)
HUNTER MISKA (35)
 
GOING FOR TWO: The Roadrunners have not won consecutive games on home ice since November 22 & 24, which was the tail-end of five-straight wins for the team at Tucson Arena (November 4-24) and eight-straight games (7-0-1-0) with points (October 27 – November 24). Since then, they are 6-10-0-0 on home ice. Can they earn back-to-back wins in their home building with a victory tonight?
 
THE LAST TIME AROUND: In the teams’ previous meeting on Friday night at Tucson Arena, the Roadrunners defeated the Rampage by a 2-1 score in overtime. Lane Pederson scored Tucson’s lone goal in regulation; Mike Sislo was credited with the game-winner 1:40 into overtime. Laurent Dauphin registered assist on both goals. Adin Hill stopped 31 of 32 shots faced in the win.
 
 
PLAYOFF PUSH: The Roadrunners enter the night with the second-lowest magic number (34) in the Western Conference. The Rampage, after Friday’s overtime loss, enter the evening four points behind the Stockton Heat for the Pacific Division’s fourth and final playoff spot.
 
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.