Trailing by three goals to the St. Louis Bandits after one period, the Topeka RoadRunners never quite got their legs under them as they fell 5-1 Friday night at the Hardees Iceplex in Chesterfield, Mo.
Chris Ciotti put St. Louis (6-1-0) up 1-0 on a powerplay goal only five minutes into the first period. Less than seven minutes later, Ryan Stouffer and Stephen Bopp also scored to give the Bandits a commanding lead. Evan Stibbard scored the lone goal in the second period to make it 4-0. St. Louis held a 21-14 shot advantage over Topeka (4-1-0) after two periods.
Halfway through the third period, Topeka’s Daniel Dupell put a shorthanded tally on the board to make it 4-1. It was Dupell’s first goal on the season. But a late goal by Stibbard sealed the deal for the Bandits. The final shot count was 30-25 in favor of St. Louis. Rasmus Tirronen, who had only allowed one goal in two games prior to Friday, got the loss for the ‘Runners.
Topeka will look to rebound tonight when they play the Bandits again at 5:05 p.m.