Wichita Falls Wildcats 3 @ Topeka RoadRunners 2 (OT) - Kyle Bauman scored in overtime to complete a furious third-period comeback, as the Wichita Falls Wildcats topped the Topeka Roadrunners, 3-2, at the Landon Arena on Monday night. Sam Piazza had a goal and two assists, Colin Staub also scored in the third period, Tyler Ledford had a pair of assists and Chase Munroe made 25 saves to earn the win. Wichita Falls scored all three of its goals on the power play.
The Wildcats came out of the gate flying, and almost opened the scoring less than two minutes into the contest. With Wichita Falls on the power play, Todd Koritzinsky spun in the high slot and ripped a shot, but it rang off the post. Minutes later, Piazza came in on a breakaway, but he too hit the iron with his effort. Topeka made the Wildcats pay for their missed chances at the 13:00 mark of the frame, as James Ring deflected Tomas Nechala’s shot from the left wall past Munroe to make it 1-0.
The Roadrunners expanded their lead in the second, as Jake Kamrass scored on the power play after Tyler Poulsen split the defense on a rush and played a centering feed right to the stick of Kamrass.
Wichita Falls entered the third period looking for an early goal to key a comeback, and the captain was on hand to deliver at the 7:47 mark of the frame. With the Wildcats on the power play, a mad scramble in front of the net caused the puck to leak out to Piazza in the high slot. The defenseman picked his spot, and whistled a shot through traffic and past PJ Bridges to make it 2-1 on his seventh goal of the season.
Wichita Falls ramped up the pressure as the period continued, and had multiple chances to notch a game-tying goal, but it was not until the last two minutes of the third that the Wildcats would beat Bridges again. After a penalty on Topeka, Wichita Falls went to work on the man advantage once more, and again the goal came out of some mayhem at the top of the crease. This time, it was Staub who cleaned up the loose puck to tie the game with his 13th tally of the season.
The game headed to overtime for the fourth-straight contest for Wichita Falls, but this time the ‘Cats would find a winner in the extra five-minute session, and once more, the marker came with the Wildcats a man up after Bauman drew a tripping call. Off the faceoff, Bauman and Piazza played catch along the blue line, before Bauman stepped to the top of the left-wing circle and placed a wicked wrister inside the far post to give the Wildcats the win.
The Wildcats and Topeka face off again on Tuesday, with puck drop scheduled for 6:35 p.m. at the Kansas ExpoCentre. Fans can follow the action on FASTHockey.com