Early Deficit Too Much for Wild to Overcome, 2-1
DES MOINES, IA – The Tucson Roadrunners scored two goals less than seven minutes into Sunday afternoon’s contest, a deficit that was too much to overcome as the Iowa Wild fell to Tucson, 2-1. Zane McIntyre outdueled Dereck Baribeau, stopping 31 shots. Matt Boldy had the only goal for Iowa.
The Roadrunners took the lead 5:32 into the contest. Matias Maccelli led Tucson into the Wild end on a 2-on-1 break. It looked like he was going to make the pass, but opted to shoot, driving a wrist shot by Baribeau for his fourth goal of the year.
It took just 71 seconds before Tucson was back on the board. Lewis Zerter-Gossage fired a shot that Baribeau, but the rebound came right to Terry Broadhurst. He simply shoveled the puck past the Wild netminder for his first goal of the year, and it looked like Tucson may run away with this game.
However, the Wild settled down, tightening up their defense which helped to create a few scoring chances of their own. Eventually, they would break through. At 17:57, Kyle Rau took the puck into the Tucson zone, stopping in the right corner. He was looking for a centering pass into the slot, but the puck deflected off the skate of a Tucson defenseman and right toward Boldy. The Iowa forward simply wound up and blasted a slapshot by McIntrye to cut the deficit to just one.
Iowa put the pressure on in the second, outshooting Tucson, 15-6. However, McIntyre was fantastic, making a number of difficult saves. At the opposite end, Baribeau was not nearly as busy but he ensured his team stayed in the game.
In the third, the Roadrunners clamped down on the Wild, holding them to just six shots while taking 10 of their own. Baribeau did the job however, keeping this a one-goal game. With 1:06 left in the game, the Wild pulled Baribeau and they had a couple of good scoring chances, but McIntyre secured the victory.
Baribeau finished with 27 saves, dropping to 4-3-0. The Iowa Wild fell to 8-4-1. They lead the Central Division, 11 percentage points ahead of the Chicago Wolves (.654-.643).
Iowa will get an extended Thanksgiving break, not returning to the ice until Saturday when they travel to take on the Henderson Silver Knights. The puck drops at 2:00 Iowa time.
By Robert Pannier