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Roadrunners drop close game to Chicago Wolves

Tucson lacks “pop” and “bite” in loss that ends a five-game win streak.

Photo Courtesy of Tucson Roadrunners

The Tucson Roadrunners continued their six-game home stand with a Tuesday match with the Chicago Wolves. While the Roadrunners were coming into the night red-hot, they were unable to keep the win streak alive and fell to Chicago 2-1.

On the scoreboard, the game appeared to be close throughout. Chicago scored the opening goal in the first period, and both teams traded goals in the second. Tucson even out-shot Chicago by two.

The critical error for Tucson was what led to the Wolves first goal. Defenseman Robbie Russo was called for a tripping call, with Tucson getting penalized for a “too many men on the ice” penalty just a few seconds later. That gave Chicago the early two-man advantage opportunity that resulted in Dylan Coghlan’s opening goal.

Following the game, Roadrunners coach Jay Varady wasn’t happy with the way Tucson performed despite the close game.

“I think we need more pop,” Varady said. “I think we need more bite. We need to manage the pucks better, put them in better places so we can have more energy.”

Varady was pretty critical on the way Tucson has worked as a team even throughout the previous win streak. Tuesday’s loss just added more to the point he’s been trying to get across.

“I think you can look at (this game) and say hey, it wasn’t the game we wanted to play,” Varady added. “We were close, but close doesn’t count. I don’t really care about being close. I want to play the right way, our team wants to play the right way. That’s where our focus is at.”

Despite the loss, the silver lining of the game is the continued strong effort by goaltender Ivan Prosvetov — who had another impressive performance setting aside 26 of 28 shots from Chicago.

“I thought he made great saves for us tonight,” Varady said. “He was able to come across and made a couple big ones on the penalty kill. He’s doing a good job in there.”

Tucson will be facing Chicago once more Wednesday night. With Adin Hill still on personal leave, Erik Kallgren — called up from Rapid City (ECHL) over the weekend — will likely get the nod between the pipes.