The Springfield Jr. Blues did what no one else has been able to do this season: win a game in regulation at Landon Arena. With a 3-2 win on Friday night, Springfield also snapped the RoadRunners win streak at a franchise high 11 games.
In the first period it was Topeka who looked like they had the bus legs rather than the visiting team. The Springfield Jr. Blues controlled the pace from the opening faceoff, outshooting Topeka 5-0 in the opening minutes of the game. The persistence paid off when Jared Rickord fed a pass to T.J. Poganski who buried a quick shot from the high slot low on the glove side of Eric Rohrkemper for a 1-0 Springfield lead at 13:59. Springfield enjoyed three power plays in the first period but Topeka successfully killed off each chance. A late hooking call on the Jr. Blues gave Topeka a power play that carried over into the second period. Outshot 9-6 in the first period, the ‘Runners got a healthy dose of \”verbal inspiration\” in the locker room.
The ‘Runners responded, scoring just :38 seconds into the frame as Nate Milam buried a rocket high on the glove side of Andrew Martin, assisted by Alec Hagaman. A short fight between Topeka\’s Ryan White and Springfield\’s Ethan Scherer accented the period, with the ‘Runners outshooting the Jr. Blues 21-3, and the game was tied 1-1 after 2.
The third period saw Topeka take the lead on a beautiful Patrick Kirtland tip of a Martin Sundstedt pass at 4:57, but the Jr. Blues rallied, striking twice quickly midway through the period. T.J. Moor snapped a high shot home at 9:22 with teams skating 4-on-4 at 9:22 to tie the game and then the Jr. Blues retook the lead when Mike Schaber buried a crisp shot from the slot at 11:25. Topeka pressured and pulled the goalie for the extra attacker but Springfield successfully ended the ‘Runners win streak at 11.
Topeka (28-6-3) will have another shot at Springfield (15-18-3) on Saturday night at the Kansas Expocentre. Face off is set for 7:05 pm.