VIDEO: White scores late goal, lifts RoadRunners past Mustangs

Galloping past New Mexico defenseman Josh Bretner (5) attempts to keep the puck from Topeka forward Anders Schultz (22) on Friday night. New Mexico kept Topeka at bay during the opening period but could not hold them off the entire contest, as Topeka won in dramatic fashion, 3-2.

Richard Kelly / Washburn Review / Video by: Bryce Grammer, Washburn Review

While the night looked bleak early on, it ended up being a game full of clutch goals for the Topeka RoadRunners on Friday night.

Beginning with a goal with less than two seconds left in the second period, continuing with a goal by a player in his first game back from injury and capped off by a goal with just 17 seconds left, Topeka (27-12-2) rallied from a 2-0 deficit to defeat the New Mexico Mustangs 3-2 at Landon Arena.

Forward Ryan White, who leads the team with 41 points, scored the game-winning goal on a shot from a tough angle.

“I just had speed going wide and I got by both of their defenseman,” said White. “The goalie gave me top glove to shoot at and I put it short side.”

The game didn’t begin promising for Topeka as New Mexico forward Bill Kent scored just 1:37 into the first period. Former RoadRunner defenseman Cody Walsh then made it 2-0 at 11:45. Topeka was outshot 8-5 in the period.

Momentum began to swing in the second period as Topeka peppered goalie Randy Graham with shots. It was forward Brian Christie who broke the shutout at 19:59 with a shot from the center slot.

“The puck was just getting tossed around the middle and it found me and I just ripped it,” said Christie. “I had no clue how much time was left.”

It was Christie’s first goal since Dec. 3 when Topeka faced the Corpus Christi Ice Rays. Topeka head coach Scott Langer said it was a changing point in the contest.

“It was huge. That was certainly a momentum switch for us,” said Langer. “It was good for him [Christie] because he’s been working so hard and nothing’s been falling for him.”

Topeka outshot New Mexico (12-26-2) 11-5 in the second period.

Topeka showed pressure in the third period as they attempted to tie the contest. At 12:09, the pressure paid off as defenseman Cory Ramsey fired a quick wrist shot past Graham to tie the game at 2. It was Ramsey’s first game with the team since October 15, 2011.

“It’s very difficult to not play hockey with how quick the game is and then step back in for the first time,” said Langer. “It was great to see him score. You could just see there was a whole bunch of stress off his shoulders.”

With the victory, goalie Peter Traber is now 17-6-3 on the season. Graham drops to 8-12-2 with the loss. The two teams play again Saturday at 7:05 p.m.