RoadRunners Skate Past Wranglers 6-3
PHOENIX, Ariz. - Mitch Carefoot had two goals and an assist and the Phoenix RoadRunners scored five unanswered goals to knock off the Las Vegas Wranglers 6-3 Wednesday night in front of 2,053 fans at US Airways Center.
The Wranglers (8-9-2) started things off early when Justin Taylor scored an unassisted goal from the top of the left circle 12 seconds into the game to give Las Vegas a 1-0 lead. The RoadRunners (10-8-2) came back just over two minutes later, though, when Colin Sinclair took a pass from Ashton Rome and scored to the right of Wrangler goalie Brent Krahn. Matt Fornataro had the other assist as Phoenix tied the game at 1-1.
Las Vegas took the lead again when Shawn Limpright netted the puck from the right side of the goal at 8:11. Taylor and Bret Tyler had the assists. Then at 16:52 Hugo Carpentier capitalized on a shorthanded break from the slot, giving the Wranglers a 3-1 lead. Adam Miller and Jason Dest had the assists as the Wranglers outshot the RoadRunners 16-8 after one period of play.
"We were a little out of sync," RoadRunners Head Coach Brad Church said of the first period. "We had too many neutral zone turnovers early."
The second period started with a goaltender change by the RoadRunners, replacing Kyle Jones with Craig Kowalski. At 5:18 of the period Merit Waldrop scored five-hole on Krahn from in front of the crease, narrowing the Wranglers' lead to one goal. Carefoot assisted. Then at 13:49 Phoenix tied the game at 3-3 when Carefoot scored from the slot off a pass from Rory Rawlyk with Gino Guyer getting the second assist. The tie would hold until second intermission with the RoadRunners outshooting Las Vegas 14-8 in the second period.
"I wanted to spark the team," Church said of putting Kowalski in. "Craig is a good goaltender and he knows when the team needs a big save."
Rome opened up scoring in the third period off a pass from Kimbi Daniels at 3:32, giving the RoadRunners a 4-3 lead. Just over a minute later Carefoot scored from the right circle at 4:39, taking a 5-3 lead. Waldrop and Michael Wilson assisted. Then at 9:52 Guyer scored an unassisted shorthanded goal, making the score 6-3 Phoenix which would be the final.
"We put pressure on their defense and capitalized on our opportunities," Church said. "It's the way we need to play; if we do it consistently we'll see results."
Phoenix out-shot Las Vegas 39-38. Kowalski stopped all 22 shots he faced in relief of Jones to improve to 7-6-1 on the season with the victory. The RoadRunners went 0-4 with the power play while Las Vegas was 0-3 with the man-advantage.
Notes: Waldrop's goal marked the first in his professional career... Daniels scored his 800th career point with his assist on Carefoot's third period goal... The win marks the first time the RoadRunners have had three wins against the Wranglers in the same season (3-2).
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