IOWA FALLS TO TUCSON 4-3Mar 31, 2018
Wild’s winless streak goes to eight games
DES MOINES, IOWA – Iowa Wild (30-25-9-6; 75 points) fell to Tucson Roadrunners (38-19-5-1; 82 points) by a score of 4-3 Saturday night at Wells Fargo Arena in front of 12,808 fans, the second largest home crowd for the Wild this season.
Wild forward Kyle Rau opened the scoring for the home squad at 10:54 in the first period for his 19th of the season. While on the power play, forward Sam Anas threw a puck on net, where Rau tossed the puck back to forward Justin Kloos. Kloos ripped a shot, forcing goaltender Hunter Miska (24 saves) to make a pad stop, giving up a rebound in the process. Rau snuck the puck between Miska’s skate and the post, giving Iowa the 1-0 lead.
Tucson’s leading scorer Carter Camper added to his total with his 16th goal and 59th point of the season at 14:55 in the opening frame. Circling the offensive zone, Carter tosses the puck on net from the blue line. Goaltender Steve Michalek (23 saves) couldn’t make the glove stop and Camper evened the game at 1-1.
As the first period winded down, Iowa defenseman Brennan Menell gave the Wild a 2-1 lead at 17:20 in the first stanza. Forward Ryan White sent the puck up to the blue line to forward Gerry Fitzgerald, who wheeled it across the ice to Menell. Menell launched a slap shot over the blocker of Miska for his eighth goal of the season.
Through 20 minutes, Iowa held a 2-1 lead, with shots tied at 10.
Iowa’s 2-1 lead held until the 1:06 mark of the third period, when Roadrunners forward Michael Bunting beat Michalek blocker side with a wrist shot from the top of the right circle to make the game 2-2. His goal was a power-play tally, coming with one second left on the penalty clock. Fifty seconds later, Bunting notched his second goal of the game and fourth score in two games as he slipped the puck five-hole on Michalek to give the road team a 3-2 lead.
Colton Beck answered back for the Wild with his 10th goal of the season 40 seconds after Bunting’s second score. Driving down the right side of the zone, Beck got a step on the Tucson defenseman before wristing a shot on net. His seeing-eye shot got through the arm of Hiska and into the back of the net, tying the game at 3-3.
It looked as if the game was destined for overtime, but Tucson forward Lane Pederson scored with 37 seconds remaining in the game, giving the Roadrunners a 4-3 lead. That score held until the final horn as Tucson earned all eight points against Iowa this season. Both teams finished the game with 27 saves.
Iowa continues its home stretch with a game against Cleveland Monsters Tuesday. Puck drop is at 7:00 p.m.
The Iowa Wild 2017-18 season is presented by Mercy Medical Center and runs from October through April. For more information, please contact the Wild office by calling 515-564-8700 or by visiting www.iowawild.com.