IOWA FALTERS AGAINST TUCSON IN 5-2 LOSSMar 20, 2019
-Wild forward Kyle Rau sets career-mark in goals in the loss-
TUCSON, ARIZ. – Iowa Wild (38-19-7-5; 78 pts.) couldn’t overcome five consecutive goals by the Tucson Roadrunners (28-22-5-2; 63 pts.) as the team fell by a score of 5-2 Tuesday evening.
Iowa took a 1-0 lead when Dmitry Sokolov scored his 13th goal of the season at 4:45 in the first period. Forward Mitch McLain won a footrace to a loose puck in the offensive zone, batting it to Sokolov at the right faceoff dot. Sokolov immediately picked up the puck and fired it on net, which slipped through the five-hole of goaltender Adin Hill (20 saves) for the team’s 38th first goal.
Tucson evened things up at 1-1 at 13:17 in the opening frame. Forward Nick Merkley had the puck behind the net and quickly send a feed to forward Michael Chaput near the left post. Chaput then knocked the puck over the pad of goaltender Andrew Hammond (28 saves) for his 12th of the season.
Just more than two minutes later, Chaput added his second of the game to give the home side a 2-1 lead. Forward Michael Bunting had the puck near the half-boards and tossed it into the slot, where it bounced off the stick of an Iowa defender and right to Chaput. He caught the puck and then rifled it past Hammond stick side for his fourth multi-goal game of the year.
At the end of the first period, Tucson led 2-1 and had a 13-7 shot advantage.
The Roadrunners made it a 3-1 game at 4:37 in the second period while on the man advantage. Defenseman Robbie Russo took a shot from the right side of the blueline that Bunting deflected into the back of the net for his third point of the contest.
Tucson continued to extend its lead with a power-play goal from forward Hudson Fasching at 16:40 in the middle frame. Fasching dug the puck out from the left corner and skated into the slot. With Hammond screened, he wristed a shot into the back of the net for his 13th of the year and gave the home side a 4-1 lead.
Through 40 minutes of play, Tucson led 4-1 and outshot the Wild 24-11.
Forward Brayden Burke capitalized on a 2-on-1 with defenseman Jalen Smereck at 7:59 in the third period to take a 5-1 lead. Smereck slid a puck over to Burke who lasered a shot over Hammond’s glove for his 12th of the year.
With 9.9 seconds remaining in the game, forward Kyle Rau put Iowa back on the board, moving the score to 5-2 while ending Tucson’s run of five unanswered goals. Forward Cal O’Reilly sent a pass to Kyle Rau inside the right faceoff circle, who blistered a shot into the net for his 24th goal of the year, a new career-high. Rau’s tally also gave him 17 on the man advantage, which leads the league, and extended his goal streak to four games, a career-high as well. Forward Sam Anas recorded the secondary assist on the play.
O’Reilly’s assist on Rau’s goal gave him points in seven straight contests and his 14 points (3g, 11a) during that stretch leads the AHL. O’Reilly’s 43 assists are tied for the second most in the AHL. Anas’ secondary helper extended his point streak to three games and he now has 11 points (4g, 7a) in his last six games.
Final shot totals favored Tucson 33-22 as the Roadrunners defeated the Wild by a score of 5-2. Iowa went 1-for-3 on the power play and 4-for-6 on the penalty kill.
Iowa and Tucson meet again tomorrow night in Arizona. Puck drop is scheduled for 9:05 p.m. CT.
The Iowa Wild 2018-19 season is presented by MercyOne Des Moines 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.