There was the Wichita Thunders Jon Booras, streaking down the ice with the puck, only air and opportunity between him and Missouri goalie Shane Owen.
Not a gimme, by any means, but the chance was there. To put the pressure on. To make the big play.
So, trailing 1-0 midway through the second period, Booras pulled back and let one rip from about 10 yards out, a real missile that sailed harmlessly to the right of Owen, out of even his reach and careening high off the glass.
I think the ice kind of got away from him, Owen said. That happens. Just not their night.
And on that note and many other similar ones, the Thunder remain mired in an early-season slump, the latest setback being a 3-0 loss to the undefeated Missouri Mavericks on Saturday night at Intrust Bank Arena.
The loss dropped Wichita to 1-7-3 and kept them winless at home. Missouri is 8-0-0.
Its tough to watch right now, tough to be a part of, obviously, Thunder coach Kevin McClelland said. You need to ask the guys in (the locker room) what they feel like at this point.
Owen mastered the Thunder for the entirety of the game, stopping all 27 shots that came his way and surviving four Thunder power plays. He even had a bit of flash with a nifty glove save on a laser beam from Matt Robinson early in the second period and with the score tied 0-0.
Tonight was huge the boys were really sharp for 60 minutes, Owen said. After the first goal we had a little bit of momentum and just kept pushing. I got a couple of lucky bounces that kept the puck out of our net.
The puck ended up in the Thunder net on Saturday the first goal coming from Eric Castonguay with 10:57 left in the second period. Missouri added two more goals in the third period from Kyle Hood and Colt King. The two scores both came in the first 10 minutes.
We need to play 60 minutes, weve been getting out to good starts and then not finishing, Thunder forward Jared Walker said. Were all professionals we cant back off when were down three goals with 10 minutes left.
McClelland lamented how quickly the game got away late the Thunder was very much in it for the first two periods.
At 1-0 were still in it, were on the offensive draw and next thing we know its in our net and its in our net again, McClelland said. This isnt the time to put our heads down. This is the time to keep going. Hard work is the only thing thats gonna get us through this. Nothing else.
First periodnone. PenaltiesOdegaard, Missouri (slashing), 15:36; Posa, Missouri (holding), 17:54.
Second period1, Missouri, Castonguay (Thinel, Hayes), 10:57. Penalties Flath, Wichita (hooking), :36; Linden, Wichita (elbowing), 4:58; Stephenson, Missouri (holding), 5:54.
Third period2, Missouri, Hood (Aduba), 17:46;. 3, Missouri, King (Kell, Ramsay), 10:05. Penalty Thinel, Missouri (hooking) 5:23
Power play Wichita 0 for 4, Missouri 0 for 2.
Shots Wichita 7-12-827; Missouri 13-8-728.
Goalies Wichita, Nelson 28 shots, 25 saves; Missouri, Owen 27-27.
T 2:08. A 4,756.