Topeka Tosses Bears and Bulls 2-1
Not a bad night when you can blanket the ice with bears for a good cause AND sweep your bitter rival right out the door. Another close contest between these two Titans of the South ended with Topeka on top of the Bulls 2-1.
The Teddy Bear Toss is a fun fan tradition in junior hockey. Last season, RoadRunner fans had to wait until late in the third period to toss their bears to the ice. Tonight, they only had to wait 53 seconds. Thanks to Peter Halash’s finding of the puck in front of Collin Delia (assisted by Jake Kamrass and Tyler Poulsen), hundreds of bears rained down on their way to being donated to the Topeka Rescue Mission. The Runners held the lead until 16:26 of the first when Roman Ammirato tied up the affair, sending the boys to the locker room at 1-1.
The second period was predictably tense as each team parried for control. Amarillo seemed to seize it at 7:48 as they gained a man advantage on a Jasen Fernsler slashing penalty. Jake Kamrass had different plans, however, taking the puck and netting a short hander (assisted Jerad Tafoya and Tomas Nechala at 9:24) to give the Runners a 2-1 heading into the third.
PJ Bridges and the RoadRunner D took it from there and locked the rest of the game down. For his part, Bridges stopped 26 of 27 shots (51 of 503 on the weekend) to complete the sweep while the defense killed all five Amarillo power plays on the night (0-11 on the power play for the weekend). The Runners claimed their second straight win and third against Amarillo, while the Bulls fell for the fifth straight game.
The boys take a holiday break next week before returning to Landon Arena on December 27 and 28 against the Springfield Junior Blues. That weekend will feature the Runners in a special National Wild Turkey Federation camouflage jersey that will be auctioned off after the game on the 28th to help benefit wildlife conservation. For more information on tickets, call 785-286-PUCK or visit www.topekaroadrunners.com.