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Tonight’s Matchup: On Sunday, the Barracuda and Bakersfield Condors collide for the first of 10 matchups on the season. San Jose went 8-2-1-1 against Bakersfield a year ago, and are 6-4-1-1 all-time at Rabobank Arena.
Closing in on 700: Returning for an AHL-record 20th season behind the bench for the San Jose Sharks top affiliate, Roy Sommer continues his historic career. In 2015-16, Sommer surpassed Fred “Bun” Cook as the AHL’s all-time leader in wins and collected his first A.R. Pieri Memorial Award as AHL Coach of the Year in 2016-17. Sommer is 699-613-48-72-66 (W-L-T-OTL-SOL) in his career and is just two games shy of 1,500 coached in the AHL.
Cuda Call Up: After Saturday’s recall of Marcus Sorensen, the Sharks now possess eight players from the Barracuda’s Calder Cup playoff roster from a year ago (Marcus Sorensen, Danny O’Regan, Joakim Ryan, Tim Heed, Barclay Goodrow, Timo Meier, Kevin Labanc and Ryan Carpenter).
Awesome Antoine: Barracuda netminder Antoine Bibeau collected his fourth-straight victory on Sunday after making 14 saves on 17 shots in San Jose’s 5-3 over San Diego after replacing Troy Grosenick in the second period due to injury. Bibeau ranks sixth in the AHL in goals-against average (2.04) and is T-eighth in save percentage (.925), and is T-first in shutouts (2). A season ago, Bibeau appeared in two games for the Toronto Maple Leafs, going 1-1 with a .927 goals-against average and a 1.99 save percentage.
Slump Buster: Adam Helewka and Rudolfs Balcers each snapped 15-game goalless droughts on Sunday. Helewka recorded his second career multi-goal game on Sunday and now ranks fourth on the Barracuda in points (three goals, eight assists). Balcers ranks second on the Barracuda in points (two goals, 11 assists), and seventh among AHL rookies in assists).