12/19/2012 9:35:00 AM Sundogs look to end skid before returning home
The Arizona Sundogs’ Kyle Hood battles the Allen Americans for a goal this past Wednesday in Prescott Valley hockey action. Hood scored his third of the year, but was traded the next day to the Missouri Mavericks.
Photo Courtesy Matt Santos
The Arizona Sundogs started this year on a hockey high, but now, in the middle of the season, are skidding on a 7-game losing slide.
After a 4-3 shootout loss to the Allen Americans this past Wednesday at home, the Sundogs headed out on a 10-day, 5-game road swing through Missouri, Texas and Colorado. It hasn't started well, with a 7-3 fall to the Mavericks on Dec. 14 and a 4-1 loss to the Ft. Worth Brahmas the following day.
Wednesday looked promising despite a plethora of penalties on both teams as the Sundogs' Pascal Morency scored late in the opening period. But the Americans knotted it 1-1 two minutes later, almost at the buzzer.
The theme would be repeated every time Arizona took the lead. Jake Hauswirth broke the tie just 33 seconds into the second frame, and Allen answered within half-a-minute. Kyle Hood made it 3-2 with 3:11 to play in the period and Allen equalized with 2:27 to go. It would be Hood's final goal as a Sundog, as the next day the organization completed a trade to send him and a future consideration to Missouri for Matt McCready and Brian Bicek.
Allen scored both of its second period goals on the power play.
Still deadlocked following the third period - after each team had taken 34 shots in regulation - and a 5-minute overtime, the game went to shootout. Only Allen's Darryl Bootland capitalized for the 4-3 victory. Adam Russo made 32 saves but took the loss in goal.
In Missouri Friday, the Mavs dominated early and often, tallying 5 in the first period, while the Sundogs got a power play goal from Chad Nehring.
Early in the second period Derek LeBlanc added the Sundogs' second score on a penalty shot. Then Jason Morgan got the third to briefly narrow the gap to 5-3, seconds before Missouri upped it again.
David Brown suffered the net loss after turning aside 25 shots.
Saturday, the Brahmas scored in every period and three times on the power play to triumph 4-1.
Arizona got its lone goal of the night from Matt Tassone, in his third game in Sundogs' uniform, with six minutes remaining in the contest.
Russo again was handed the loss after blocking 25 attempts.
Arizona hoped to stop the bleeding last night back in Missouri with the Mavericks after the Tribune's press time, before a 2-game set with the Cutthroats this Friday and Saturday.
Arizona then gets a break from competition to prepare for a 3-game home series with the Bloomington Blaze on Dec. 28, 29 and 31.