10th Straight Win Ends Regular Season
Now the real work begins. Forty-five games in the books and the Capitals head into the South Divisional Playoffs as the regular season division champion with a lot of momentum, capping off the season finale with their 10th straight win 7-1 over the Sugar Land Imperials.
Alex Sauer, Dante Juris, and Georgy Ostapchuk each had two goals to lead Topeka in this one. Drake Deberry kicked off the rout with a goal in the first. Sauer fired in the game winner at 9:20 in the second and Juris would follow with two scores of his own in the period to make it 4-0 Caps after two.
In the third, Sauer struck again early while Ostapchuk bookended Sugar Land's lone goal with two of his own (both on power plays) to lock in the final at 7-1. Hayden Smith collected his second win in net on the season by stopping 21 of 22 shots. Both of his wins this year, and all three of his starts, have come against the Imperials.
The Capitals finish their inaugural season with a 33-11-1 record, good for an impressive .744 winning percentage and a 31-point lead in the standings against their closest opponent, the Dallas Junior Stars. The Caps only two "home" losses came during the NA3HL Showcase making their record 18-2-0, but they are a perfect 16-0-0 at Landon Arena. On the road, the Caps went 15-9-1. More importantly, the Capitals dominated the South Division with a record of 27-4-1 including wins in the final 10 games of the season.
Hardijis Kupaks hit the clubhouse as the team's leader in points (72), goals (33), assists (39, tied with Nick Rizzo), and game winning goals (5, tied with Yu Hikosaka). Nick Rizzo led the team in games played (45, tied with Dante Juris), assists, and plus/minus (+44). In net, goaltender Jude Hull stood tallest with a 19-6-1 record, 755 saves, two shutouts (tied with Mike McElroy), and a 2.95 goals-against-average.