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Thursday, April 13, 2017
SAP Center – San Jose, Calif. (7:00 p.m.)
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Tonight’s Matchup: On Thursday, the Barracuda host the Tucson Roadrunners at SAP Center for the final time this season. San Jose is 2-1-0-0 against Tucson at SAP and 5-1-0-1 in seven total matchups. Ryan Carpenter leads all skaters in points (4+4=8) during the seven-game season series.
Best of the West: The San Jose Barracuda have already secured the John Chick Trophy as Pacific Division Champions and the Bud Poile Trophy as Western Conference regular season champs. San Jose can win the Kilpatrick Trophy as the AHL’s regular season champion, but Wilkes-Barre Scranton would need to lose at least one of their final games, and San Jose must win out
Sommer Shines: On Wednesday, the AHL announced that Barracuda head coach Roy Sommer was voted the winner of the Louis A.R. Pieri Memorial Award as the AHL’s outstanding coach for the 2016-17 season. Overseeing one of the AHL’s youngest rosters, Sommer has guided the Barracuda to the Pacific Division title and the second-best record in the entire league with two games remaining in the regular season. San Jose is 43-16-2-5 (93 points, .705) and owns the AHL’s top-ranked offense (3.44 goals per game), and second-ranked power play (23.8 percent), while ranking fourth in team defense (2.56 goals per game) and eighth in penalty killing (83.3 percent). Sommer has also sent nine players to the NHL to skate with the parent San Jose Sharks this season. Sommer, 60, is in his 19th season as a head coach in the AHL, a tenure spent entirely in the San Jose Sharks organization. The Oakland, Calif., native was named to the position on May 28, 1998, and has guided the Kentucky Thoroughblades (1998-2001), Cleveland Barons (2001-06), Worcester Sharks (2006-15) and Barracuda (2015- ) to a record of 691-675-112 and four division titles, coaching 126 players in the AHL who have gone on to play in the National Hockey League. Sommer.
Not “Baz”: After being named to the first AHL All-Star Team last week, Troy Grosenick collected some more hardware on Monday, earning the Aldege “Baz” Bastien Memorial Award as the AHL’s outstanding goaltender for the 2016-17 season. Grosenick has a record of 30-10-3 in 47 appearances for San Jose this season, ranking second in the league in wins (30), goals-against average (1.98) and save percentage (.929). He is also just the fifth goaltender in AHL history to reach double digits in shutouts in a single season (10), and he put together a scoreless stretch of more than 248 minutes from Nov. 19 to Dec. 18. Grosenick enters the final week of the regular season with a 21-2-1 mark (1.74, .936, 5 SO) in his last 23 decisions – including a 17-0-1 stretch from Jan. 25 to Mar. 18 – leading a second-half surge that has sent the Barracuda to the Pacific Division title and the best record in the Western Conference.
Heed Check: Tim Heed was not selected to the AHL All-Star Game in Lehigh Valley in late January but was voted to the second AHL All-Star Team just last week. Among blueliners, Heed is fourth in the AHL in points (55), third in assists (41), T-sixth goals (14), T-fifth in power-play goals (8), T-fifth in game-winning goals (4) and is T-14th overall in the league in points.
Rockin’ Ryan: Joakim Ryan is T-fifth in the AHL in points (48), fourth in assists (38), and is fourth in the AHL in plus/minus (+28). Ryan had his seven-game point/assists (2+9=11) streak snapped in Tuesday’s loss against Tucson.