SAN JOSE BARRACUDA (12-15-1-0) vs TUCSON ROADRUNNERS (11-11-2-1)
WED., JAN. 12 | 7:00 P.M. | SAP CENTER AT SAN JOSE | SAN JOSE, CA
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Tucson is in Town: The Barracuda will face off against the Tucson Roadrunners (Arizona Cayotes) on Wednesday for the first time this season on the six-game season series, and the first meeting of two over the next three days in San Jose. The Barracuda are 16-11-3-2 all-time against the Roadrunners and 9-5-1-1 at the SAP Center. The Barracuda went 0-1-1-0 in two regular-season games against Tucson last year (both played in Arizona), but knocked the ‘Runners out of the postseason with a 2-1 single-elimination play-in win on May. 18, 2021 at the FivePoint Arena in Irvine, CA. Wednesday is the first visit for Tucson to the Bay Area since Feb. 17, 2020 (SJ 6, TUC 3), 696 days.
About Saturday Night: The San Jose Barracuda defeated the streaking Henderson Silver Knights by a score of 6-3 last Saturday with the game-winning goal coming off the stick of forward Joachim Blichfeld. Sasha Chmelevski notched his first career AHL hat-trick and picked up an assist for his second four-point game of his career. The hatty was the franchise's ninth three-goal effort all-time and the first since Joel Kellman notched a hat-trick against Henderson on April 30, 2021.
Roadrunners Report: Tucson is currently riding a three-game losing streak (0-2-0-1) and is 3-5-1-1 in their last 10 games played. They sit at sixth in the Pacific Division and 10th in the Western Conference and are a minus-17 in goal-differential. Only the Barracuda have a worse +/- in the Pacific Division. Tucson’s power-play is in the middle of the league at 18.3% but the PK has fared better at 82.7% which is 10th best. Wednesday marks the first game of a six-game roadie for the Roadrunners who will visit Stockton, Bakersfield, and Ontario during their trip. After serving as an assistant coach with the Coyotes a season ago, Jay Varady is back in the Old Pueblo, running the bench for the Yotes top affiliate, his third season assuming that role.
800 for Sommer: After last Saturday’s win, Head Coach Roy Sommer now sits at 800 career victories in his 24-year AHL coaching career. The Oakland, Calif., native has been behind the bench for 1,701 games in the AHL, going 800-694-48-160 (W-L-T-OTL/SOL) over that span. During the 2015-16 season, the Barracuda’s first in San Jose, Sommer surpassed Fred “Bun” Cook (636 wins) for the most wins in AHL history, notching a 4-2 victory on Feb. 10, 2016, over Ontario. Sommer collected his 700th win on Dec. 3, 2017, at Bakersfield (2-1 W).
Spiky Special Teams: After going 0-for-21 on the power-play, the Barracuda finally treaded water again with a PPG off the stick of Sasha Chmelevksi on Saturday. The team overall went finished the game 1-for-4 on the night. San Jose’s power-play sits at 13th in the league at 19.2% but possesses the best home power-play percentage at 28.1%. On the flip side, the PK is 28th in the league at 73.5% but had a 3-for-3 effort against the Silver Knights on Sunday. The Barracuda are T-first, along with the Springfield Thunderbirds, in the AHL in shorthanded goals entering Wednesday (7).