Capitals Pound The Imperials 9-0
After losing him for a couple of weeks to the World Juniors Tounament, Caps fans around Topeka are exclaiming, “It’s great to have Yu back!” A relentless attack and punishing D led to a 9-0 drubbing of division foe Sugar Land in Landon Arena today.
A very slow start for both teams in this one with neither side really showing much energy until the final minutes of the first. That was when Yu Hikosaka broke through on a power play (assisted by Kole Hudson and Hardijis Kupaks at 16:50) to give the Caps a 1-0 lead. A short time later, Kupaks added another power play netter (assisted by Hikosaka and Nick Rizzo at 19:03) to make it 2-0 heading into the intermission.
In the second period, the wheels fell off for the Imperials. When the dust settled, the Caps 6-0 leaving little hope for the visitors. Georgy Ostapchuk (assisted by Trenton Faber and Hudson at 4:12), Hikosaka (assisted by Kupaks and Jayden Munnelly at 10:40), Rizzo (assisted by Kupaks and Hikosaka at 17:57, and Hikosaka’s hat trick finisher (assisted by Kupaks at 18:13) accounted for all of the scoring in the second and they were not quite done.
In the third it was Kupaks again (assisted by Munnelly and Hudson at 1:32) who inched the game further out of reach at 7-0. Munnelly got in on the action with his own pipe splitter (assisted by Kupaks and Hikoaka) that posted a snowman on the scoreboard at 8:43. Closing it out was, of course, Hikosaka (assisted by Austin Petrie and Munnelly at 16:30) who ended the crowd pleasing deluge at 9-0.
For his part on defense, Mike McElroy was stellar, stopping all 18 shots that came his way in his second shutout of the season.
The Caps and the Imperials lock horns again tomorrow at 3pm at Landon Arena. The game will be the second of a three game series that concludes on Sunday morning at 11am. Tickets to all Capitals games are only $5 and parking is free. RoadRunners Season Ticket Holders get into the games free as well. For more information on tickets and upcoming games, call 785-286-PUCK or visit www.topekacapitals.com.