The Topeka RoadRunners look like they used their bye week to their advantage.
Despite giving up a goal 13 seconds into the game, Topeka (10-5-2) held the New Mexico Mustangs to just 16 shots on the evening, winning 4-1 Friday night at Landon Arena.
Topeka coach Scott Langer thought his club put out a much-needed solid performance.
“In a lot of areas we were solid,” said Langer. “The stats say so. We possessed the puck quite a bit and some of the stuff we implemented this week worked real well. Obviously, we had a few more chances we should’ve buried. But, we only gave up one goal and 16 shots, so there were a lot of good things going on.”
Michael Hill put Topeka on the board late in the first period on a turnaround shot that found its way past Mustang goalie Matt Madore. He continued his scoring just 1:06 into the second period to give Topeka a 2-1 lead. Brian Christie fired a glove side shot past Madore at the 17:27 mark to give Topeka a 3-1 lead.
Christie finished off the scoring at the 13:05 mark of the third period, giving him his first multi-goal game this season. He was happy his team responded the way they did after giving up an early goal, especially because Topeka had lost three of their first four home games this season.
“We couldn’t have another letdown here,” said Christie. “We have to have these fans pumped and ready to go. I think we were more fresh and excited to play. We were fired up, and it showed.”
Topeka did give up a few odd-man rushes in the match, however, but Topeka goalie Rasmus Tirronen, whose father is visiting from Finland to watch him play, held his ground.
“We have to clean up a few (of the odd-man rushes),” said Langer. “We had so much success possessing the puck that we forgot about some of our responsibilities and (Tirronen) had to bail us out. It could have been 4-4 with some of those chances. But that’s what we expect from Rasmus and he did a great job.”
New acquisitions Jordan Robertson and Trevor Campbell were in the line-up for the RoadRunners. Campbell registered an assist on the night.
Topeka and New Mexico (5-13-2) play again tonight at 7:05 p.m.