In the second of a two game series at the Arizona Coyotes’ Gila River Arena, the Charlotte Checkers defeated the Tucson Roadrunners 4-2. In goal, Tucson’s Adin Hill made his fourth consecutive start and Michael Leighton was between the pipes for the Checkers.
The first was as lopsided of a period as you’ll ever see. It was a bit slow out of the gate, taking 4:05 seconds for the first shot on goal to occur, but the Checkers would heat things up very quickly. First goal of the game was scored by Charlotte on the power play as they maintained possession in the offensive zone, kept passing and Patrick Dwyer eventually found an opening. Just 42 seconds later the Roadrunners turned the puck over in the defensive zone, putting Checkers captain Patrick Brown on a breakaway, giving his team a 2-0 lead.
After going up 2-0 in such a short amount of time, the Checkers’ confidence was soaring. Feeding off of this momentum, Andrew miller sauced a pass over a few Roadrunners, giving Connor Brickley an open net. This left the score 3-0 Checkers after 20, carrying an 11-6 shot advantage.
For the start of the second period Marek Langhamer replaced Adin Hill after a rare poor outing for the young goaltender. Langhamer looked solid in his relief effort, keeping the Roadrunners in the game for just long enough to for them to begin mounting a comeback.
Six minutes and 22 seconds in, Laurent Dauphin registered the Roadrunners’ first shot of the period and goal of the game, patiently carrying the puck, going five hole, and finding the back of the net.
The Roadrunners’ offense didn’t stop there as Ryan MacInnis tipped Kyle Wood’s shot from the point, making it a 3-2 game.
The Roadrunners did not take any of the momentum they gained from their second period performance into the third, failing to get a shot on goal for the first four minutes of the period. Once they got things going however, Charlotte’s defense and goaltending had to keep them in the game as the Roadrunners outshot the Checkers 9-3 in the final frame. In the end, Charlotte managed to survive Tucson’s late surge as Andrej Nestrasil sealed the deal with an empty netter, leaving the final score at 4-2.