PARK CITY — If there was any doubt that Freddy Moojen's calf injury was mostly healed, the Wings forward didn't remove it completely just by scoring four goals in Wichita's 20-4 win over Syracuse on Friday night.
No, it was the celebrating that was most indicative of Moojen's renewed health.
Moojen sprinted wildly across the field. He jumped onto the boards and bowed for the fans. He leaped into the arms of his teammates.
If the Wings can have Moojen at full strength, giving them a third scoring option to go with Jamar Beasley and Chile Farias, Wichita's 1-5 start might become a distant memory.
"He's been carrying little injuries," Wings coach LeBaron Hollimon said. "You watch him, and even if he's not technically sharp, he's the hardest worker on the field."
Syracuse scored 12 seconds in and challenged the Wings early with their speed and physical play. Wichita matched the Knights and soon overmatched them in those areas.
Moojen was the cog in those efforts. After Beasley tied it with an unassisted rebound goal, Moojen missed his first chance to give the Wings the lead when he mishandled a pass from Farias that would have given Moojen a clear, point-blank shot.
Falling back on his quickness and superior footwork, Moojen didn't miss the next opportunity. Beasley found Moojen near the elbow, and Moojen beat a defender by quickly turning around and scoring to put the Wings ahead 4-2.
Moojen scored again minutes later in similar fashion, getting off a shot in one motion after a pass from Omar Quiroz.
Moojen got a hat trick with more than nine minutes to go in the second quarter, but not before the Wings delivered a crowd-pleasing sequence to go ahead 8-2 in the first.
After several shots narrowly missed, the Wings stayed on the attack until Farias ended up with the ball outside the penalty line. Farias initially struggled to get by his defender, but he eventually created space and scored.
Syracuse2 0 2 0 — 4 Wichita8 4 0 8 — 20
Scoring—1. Syracuse, Elino (unassisted), 0:12; 2. Wichita, Beasley (unassisted), 3:24; 3. Wichita, Moojen (Beasley), 7:36; 4. Moojen (Quiroz), 8:42; 5. Wichita, Farias (unassisted), 13:35. Penalties— Wichita, Moojen (tripping), 14:14.
Scoring—6. Wichita, Moojen (unassisted), 5:42; 7. Wichita, Lemons (Beasley), 7:21. Penalties— Wichita, Moseley (too many men), 1:22; Syracuse, Megson (kicking), 9:31; Wichita, Beasley (jumping in), 9:31.
Scoring—8. Syracuse, Serna (Eleneio), 3:38. Penalties— Wichita, Quiroz (unsportsmanlike conduct yellow card, 5 min.), 10:04; Syracuse, Megson (pushing), 10:04; Wichita, Jobe (four fouls), 11:57.
Scoring—9. Beasley, shorthanded (unassisted), 4:11; 10. Wichita, Beasley (Cushing), 6:40; 11. Wichita, Moojen (Perez), 8:35; 12. Wichita, Cushing (Moojen), 12:53. Penalties— Wichita, Worley (too many men team foul), 3:47.
Shots—Syracuse 24, Wichita 25. Power play— Syracuse 0 for 4, Wichita 0 for 1. Saves— Syracuse, Reed 11; Wichita, Carvalho 7, Martinez 6. T— 1:58. A— 2,700.