After a depleted Barracuda lineup was easily handled by the San Diego Gulls in a 5-1 loss the Barracuda looked to get back on track in a weekend series in Tucson.
Barracuda 5 - Roadrunners 2
The first game of the series held Saturday night was what could only be described as a textbook Barracuda game. The Barracuda, for the most part, controlled the pace and if not for the heroics of Roadrunner goaltender Adin Hill the score could have been far worse in favor of the Barracuda.
Ryan Carpenter opened the scoring at the nine-minute mark of the first period with his 10th of the year from Julius Bergman. The Barracuda outshot the Roadrunners by a 10-to-1 margin in the first period.
The Roadrunners did show some life in the first half of the second period, scoring two goals and taking the lead. You have to admire the fight the Roadrunners put up considering the parent Coyotes have really stripped this team down to the bolts.
Rourke Chartier responded for the Barracuda with an assist from Buddy Robinson on a short-handed goal. Three minutes later Ryan Carpenter scored his 11th to retake the lead and the Barracuda didn’t look back. This was one of two 5-on-5 goals the Barracuda scored all weekend. John McCarthy wrapped up the period with a power play goal and Mirco Mueller added a goal in a very rough third period.
Buddy Robinson was initially considered a cast off in the Tommy Wingels deal and assumed to be cast off at the end of the season. Letting Robinson go this offseason would be a mistake for the Barracuda and the Sharks. While there is very little NHL upside in Robinson he is a guy that you always notice on the ice for the Barracuda.
The final shots on goal were 31 to 18 in favor of San Jose.
Roadrunners 5 - Barracuda 4 F/SO
A combination of lackluster play and questionable goaltending by Mantas Armalis saw the Roadrunners with a commanding 4-0 lead just over halfway into a very dominant second period by the Roadrunners. A Barclay Goodrow goal stopped the bleeding on a short-handed with fewer than two minutes remaining in the period.
The Goodrow show continued in the third period with another short-handed goal at the six-minute mark where he took the puck and just blew past the Roadrunner defenders for a breakaway goal. Later, on the power play, Barclay Goodrow made a pass to Heed who set up Joakim Ryan for his ninth of the season cutting the lead to just one on the power play. Goodrow finished the hat trick with less than a minute left in the game forcing overtime.
The overtime period solved nothing and the game went to the shootout. Unfortunately for the Barracuda the Roadrunners buried their chances and won the game. The Barracuda outshot the Roadrunners by a margin of 43-24.
- The Barracuda now lead the AHL in short-handed goals on the season.
- Kevin Labanc has been held to two assists since being returned to the Barracuda. I feel that he may have hit a mental rookie wall.
- Tim Clifton made his debut on the 4th line and looked like a guy who had played his first two games in an unfamiliar system.
- The Barracuda return to SAP Center this weekend for back to back games against the Manitoba Moose.