The Arizona Wildcats aren’t the only team in Tucson riding a hot winning streak.
The Tucson Roadrunners have strung together three straight victories and head into this weekend’s home stand with the best record in the American Hockey League’s Pacific Division at 5-1-1-0.
The Roadrunners, the AHL affiliate of the Arizona Coyotes, beat the Iowa Wild twice over the weekend. They face the Cleveland Monsters at home Friday and Saturday night.
Tucson’s aggressive offensive approach has paid off early in the season, as the Roadrunners have scored four or more goals in five of their first seven games.
Dylan Strome, the third overall pick in the 2015 NHL Draft, is the catalyst for the offense. Strome, 20, began the season with the Coyotes before being sent down to Tucson in early October.
In his six games with the AHL affiliate, he has nine assists and one goal.
Strome led the Roadrunners to a comeback victory on Saturday when he delivered an overtime assist to Ryan MacInnis to beat the Wild. Strome was rewarded Monday with AHL Player of the Week honors.
Coyotes break through
The Roadrunners and Coyotes both began their seasons with a streak. They were just heading in different directions.
The Coyotes tied the worst start in NHL history by losing their first 11 games. Arizona finally got in the win column Monday night by beating the Philadelphia Flyers 4-3 in overtime.
Former Roadrunner Brendan Perlini scored a goal in the third period for the Coyotes.
Arizona sits in last place in the Western Conference with three total points. That’s well behind the conference-leading St. Louis Blues, who have 21 points.
Regional foes Los Angeles and Vegas are also among the NHL’s hottest teams.
The Coyotes have called up three different Roadrunners goalkeepers during the season’s first month.
Hunter Miska is the latest goalie to get a shot with the NHL club. He was recalled by Arizona on Monday morning.
Miska, a 22-year old rookie from Minnesota, had gone 3-0-0 as goalkeeper with the Roadrunners.
Tucson’s ever-changing roster now includes goalkeeper Louis Domingue, who played seven games with the Coyotes this season before being demoted Tuesday.
The decision to assign Domingue to Tucson comes two days after the organization placed the goaltender on waivers.
Marek Langhamer and Adin Hill are likely the go-to choices at net until the Coyotes make their next roster move.
Weekend series on tap
The Roadrunners and Monsters will play with beer lovers in mind. Friday’s game is $2 beer night, and Saturday’s marks the team’s craft brew fest. Both games start at 7:05 p.m.