Meeting for the final time this season, the Runners and Junior Blues took to the ice over the weekend at Springfield. When the dust settled, each team had claimed a victory and Springfield clinched the season series 5-3.
The Runners came into Friday night's game well rested, having had the previous weekend off, but the extra time to prepare did not translate into an offensive advantage. Midway through the first, Springfield's Brendan Jacques tallied a power play goal with only one second left on the penalty clock to give the Junior Blues a 1-0 lead. It was an edge Topeka was unable to overcome despite outshooting Springfield 37-27 including 16 shots on net in the first period. Goaltender Dryden McKay collected his second shutout of the season and his fourth victory over Topeka. Matej Tomek stopped 26 of the 27 shots against him in a game he played well enough to win. The victory for Springfield gave the team their fifth of the year over Topeka and the season series.
Saturday night, the Runners finally lit the lamp as Jasen Fernsler, playing in his 100th game as a Runner, fired in the game's first goal at 4:06 of the opening frame (assisted by Daniel Brickley and Sly Sutter). The Junior Blues evened the score at 9:38 to send the game into the second tied at one. Carlos Fornaris (assisted by Fernsler and Cam Strong) took the lead back for Topeka at 9:07 in the second and Daniel Rzavsky combined with Shawn Brennan for two goals in the third to seal the victory for the visiting team. Brickley and Sutter each had two assists in the game while Mike Gornall and Sam Rennaker added one-a-piece. Springfield again mounted 27 shots against Tomek who was equal to the task once again, denying all but one for the win.
Following the RoadRunners Coach's Show this Tuesday night (Blind Tiger Brewery and Restaurant at 6pm), the Runners will be boarding a plane for Washington as they travel to Wenatchee to face the Wild in a three-game set starting this Thursday night. The games can be seen live on FastHockey.com at the Official RoadRunners Away Game Viewing Parties. They will also be broadcast on Sports Radio 1490 KTOP and on iHeartRadio. The Runners will return to Landon Arena on February 27th to face the Wichita Falls Wildcats. Saturday the 28th will be Hockey & Heels Night with the Runners. For more information on how you can be a part of this event, call 785-286-PUCK.