GAMEDAY: BARRACUDA AT ROADRUNNERSJan 3, 2020
SAN JOSE BARRACUDA (10-17-0-2) at TUCSON ROADRUNNERS (24-7-0-0)
FRIDAY, JAN. 3 | 6:05 P.M. | TUCSON ARENA | TUCSON, AZ
20/20 Vision: The Barracuda continue their three-game road trip in Tucson on Friday, in the first game of the new decade. Friday marks the first meeting of two against the Roadrunners over the weekend and the fourth on the eight-game season series. The Barracuda are 1-2-0 against the Coyotes affiliate this year, with their only win coming on November 17, 2019 (7-1).
Last Time Out: The Barracuda suffered their third consecutive loss on Tuesday, falling 4-0 to the Stockton Heat. The shutout loss was San Jose’s first since opening night at Ontario (0-5 L) on October 4, 2019. In the loss, the Barracuda failed to capitalize on seven power-play opportunities and game up a shorthanded goal.
Roadrunners Rolling: Tucson enters Friday with the Pacific Division's best record and the second-best winning percentage in the AHL (.774). The Roadrunners are coming off a 7-4 win over the San Diego Gulls on New Year’s Eve and are in the midst of a season-long seven-game homestand. Tucson boasts a 13-4-0-0 home record, the best in the Pacific Division and are averaging the second most goals-per-game (3.87) in the AHL and the third-fewest goals-against-per-game (2.52).
A Career Capped: Before last Friday’s game, Barracuda captain John McCarthy, 33, announced he was going call it a career after 11 seasons due to health reasons. McCarthy suffered an Ischemic stroke on December 10th and has since made a full recovery. He joined the Barracuda’s coaching staff immediately after the announcement. McCarthy will go down as the San Jose’s Sharks all-time AHL leader in games played (552) [Worcester, San Jose], goals (125), assists (164), and points (289) and the Barracuda’s all-time leader in games played (275), goals (62), assists (76), points (138), power-play goals (17), and shorthanded goals (5). Also, McCarthy skated in 88 NHL games with Sharks between 2009-2012, accumulating six points (three goals, three assists) and 22 penalty minutes. The Boston native also captained the 2009 Boston University Terriers to a National Championship and skated for Team USA at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
Goalie Swap: Prior to Tuesday’s game, the Barracuda recalled goaltender Zachary Sawchenko from the Allen Americans. Prior to his recall, Sawchenko appeared in 13 games with the Americans, going 8-2-3, with a 2.35 goals-against average and a .930 save percentage, with a pair of shutouts. In a corresponding move, the team assigned goaltender Andrew Shortridge to the Americans. The Barracuda signed Sawchenko to a two-year deal on March 29, 2019.
Maxed Out: Sophomore forward Max Letunov picked up an assist on Friday and Sunday and now leads the team in points (23) and is tied for first in power-play goals (3) and game-winners (2). Prior to Tuesday, Letunov had recorded points in 13 of his last 15 games (3+14=17). The Sharks originally acquired Letunov from the Arizona Coyotes in a draft-day trade in 2016.
Youth Movement: The Barracuda are the AHL’s youngest roster with an average age of 22.48-years-old. No other team in the league is under 23-years-old. In fact, seven players on the 'Cuda roster are 21-years-old or younger, including two players under 21 (Sasha Chmelevski  and Ivan Chekhovich ).