In the first of a two-game series against the San Jose Barracuda and on Craig Cunningham night, the Tucson Roadrunners lost 5-2. Cunningham, the Roadrunners captain who collapsed before a game against the Manitoba Moose back in November, received a painting, a signed commemorative AHL All-Star Game jersey and dropped the ceremonial opening faceoff. In goal, it was Adin Hill for the Roadrunners, and Troy Grosenick was between the pipes for San Jose.
Mitch Moroz attempts a wrap around.
The first-place Barracuda dominated the game out of the gate, outshooting the Roadrunners 10-1. Their shot and possession advantage allowed Barracuda right winger Ryan Carpenter to open the scoring. However, the Roadrunners’ goaltending was solid as Adin Hill stopped nine shots, holding the deficit at one.
The Roadrunners stormed back in the first half of the second period as Branden Trook crashed the net, scored, tying up the game.
Tap it in, Troock! pic.twitter.com/HTI3E1Oa1l
About eight minutes in, veteran forward Eric Selleck got on a breakaway, sniped Grosenick, giving the Roadrunners their only lead of the game.
Selleck goes streaking. pic.twitter.com/x1oTvdBiiB
After that, the Roadrunners conceded a shorthanded goal in what would end up being a turning point for the Barracuda. After that, it was all San Jose for the remainder of the game. Late in the second, Ryan Carpenter deflected shot up front, putting the Barracuda up 3-2.
San Jose’s defenseman Micro Mueller’s third period goal left the final score at 5-2 and shots after 60 were 30-18.
- Too few shots. Despite the final score the Roadrunners did not play a terrible game, even holding a 2-1 lead at one point in the second period. Totaling 18 shots, they just never got nearly as many scoring chances as they needed to win a game against a very good San Jose team.
- Roadrunners need to simplify their game. To increase their shot totals, Tucson needs to shoot more. The Roadrunners just spend way too much time passing the puck, and failing to convert offensive zone possession to meaningful scoring chances.
Look for the Roadrunners to bounce back tomorrow, in an afternoon rematch against San Jose.