While the Topeka Pilots 2018-2019 campaign came to a close on Saturday night in Corpus Christi, a great foundation has been laid for next season.
After being eliminated from the NAHL South Division postseason chances on Friday night, Topeka (23-29-8) played for pride on Saturday night.
Despite peppering goaltender Brian George with 46 shots, the Pilots could not break through until the third period.
Trailing 4-0, the Pilots tacked on a goal halfway through the final 20 minutes, but they would get no closer, falling 4-1 at the American Bank Center in front of 4,874 fans.
Slovakian goaltender Jakub Dobes got his first start of the season in net for the Pilots. Dobes joined the Pilots after goaltender Emil Gransoe went down with an injury.
Dobes stopped 28 of 32 shots he faced, giving up two tallies in the first and second periods, putting Topeka behind 4-0 entering the final frame.
Forward Brendan Schultz scored the lone tally for the Pilots at 8:15 of the third, his 12th of the season. Schultz, a Schaumburg, Ill. native, is one of the age outs for Topeka, finishing the year with 33 points total, also earning 21 assists.
Topeka will head into the offseason, looking to rebuild on its inaugural season. Season tickets are also now on sale for the 2019-2020 season.