HEAT (25-11-3-3) vs. WILD (29-14-3-3)
1:00 p.m. PST | AHLTV | Spreaker | iHeartRadio | Fox Sports 1280
2019-20 Season Series: 0-1-1-0
2019-20 Heat Road Record: 14-5-0-2
2019-20 Wild Home Record: 17-7-0-2
Power Play – 39-for-154 (25.3%); 2nd
Penalty Kill – 155-for-177 (87.6%); 2nd
Power Play – 45-for-213 (21.1%); 6th
Penalty Kill – 164-for-192 (85.4%); 4th
2019-20 Leading Scorers
Points – Gawdin (40)
Goals – Robinson (16)
Points – Anas (55)
Goals – Mayhew (33)
The Heat will look to bounce back from Saturday’s setback in Des Moines, a game in which Stockton scored first but conceded five of the next six strikes in the 5-2 final score. Austin Czarnik has been red hot over the last 120 minutes of hockey with four goals while forwards Byron Froese (3g,5a) and Alan Quine (2g,6a) have tallied at least a point in five-straight games. Stockton looks to snap its first regulation losing streak of the season in Sunday’s game, Saturday’s result giving the club its first back-to-back regulation road losses of the season. The Heat are 14-5-0-2 on the road so far on the campaign.
Saturday was the Sam Anas show, the forward posting an impressive five points with a pair of goals and three helpers, while the supporting cast of AHL leading goal-scorer Gerald Mayhew (2g,1a) and netminder Kaapo Kahkonen (36 saves) also made strong contributions in the win. Iowa rides an eight-game point streak into Sunday’s matchup and has won five in a row, seven-straight on home ice. Iowa is 9-7-2-0 against the Pacific Division so far this season.
US VS. THEM
The Heat failed to record a point in last night’s game – the first time Stockton left the rink empty-handed in the all-time series, now 5-1-2-0 against the Wild. The season series has two remaining games, Sunday’s contest and a game on Saturday, February 29, in what always is an exciting matchup to take in. The key for Stockton will be trying to slow down Iowa’s troublesome tandem of Gerald Mayhew and Sam Anas, who have seven and four points against Stockton this season, respectively. The Heat are led by captain Byron Froese with his three points (1g,2a) against Iowa, two of which came in Saturday’s contest.
Stockton’s offensive muscle is well-documented, the explosive club coming into Sunday second in the AHL at 3.71 goals per game, just .03 behind top-ranked Belleville’s 3.74. The Heat stand in a group just as exclusive when it comes to scoring depth, one of just two teams in the AHL with four 15-goal scorers, alongside the Syracuse Crunch, who have played in eight more games than Stockton. Five teams (Belleville, Charlotte, Milwaukee, Tucson and Utica) have three such scorers, and the Heat are nearing a fifth and sixth player joining that club with Matthew Phillips, currently nursing a lower body injury, sitting at 14 and Austin Czarnik at 13.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Heat – Byron Froese
The captain is on a heater, his first five-game scoring streak of the campaign. Froese notched a multi-point effort in last night’s contest with a goal and a helper and will look to push his run to six games in Sunday’s matinee.
Wild – Sam Anas
Does he have any scoring left in him after last night’s contest? Anas stole the show with two goals, both coming in the third period, to go with three assists in a five-point outburst. Anas leads the league in scoring with 55 points on the campaign and is also tops in assists with 38. He has seven points in two games against Stockton this season.