It’s easy to pinpoint when things came undone for the Wichita Wings in Saturday night’s 15-12 loss to the Chicago Soul at Hartman Arena.
With under three minutes to play before halftime and the Wings trailing 8-6, the Soul uncorked seven more points for a 15-6 lead at the break.
One of the goals, a three-pointer from former Wing Carlos "Chile" Farias, zoomed past Wichita goaltender Sanaldo Carvalho from three-quarters of the field away.
"I saw Sanaldo at the top of the box and I said ‘Hey, why not?’” Farias said. "That was my chance and I just hit it."
All this while Chicago was doing its best to let the Wings back in the game with two yellow cards and a blue card — all in the second quarter.
"This is a game we really needed because (Wichita) is a team we’re battling with for a playoff spot," Farias said. "In the end we’re in a fight with them in the standings. Me playing good … this was a place I enjoyed playing, I loved it here and I really respect the fans.
"More important is that I help the team get a win, though."
It was an ugly end to a half where the Wings had the lead twice, and left Wichita coach LeBaron Hollimon struggling to pinpoint where his team’s focus went awry.
"Inexperience plays a part, but you can’t just put it on one single play," Hollimon said. "Giving away free kicks in dangerous spots and not being able to defend them… six points on free kicks. Take those six points out of it and you can see the score."
Two first-quarter goals from Freddie Moojen put Wichita up 4-2, but the only scoring the Wings could muster in the second quarter was on a point-blank goal from Daniel Villegas to tie the score 6-6 before the Soul went on its big run.
"We prepare ourselves mentally to have a good game and the first quarter, things are fine … second quarter things got away from us," said Moojen, who scored three goals for the hat trick. "Then we’re playing catch up."
Chicago didn’t score a goal in the second half and Wichita rallied to within 15-12 with almost five minutes left on a goal from Kevin Ten Eyck, his second of the half.
"We’ve got to come out with a lot more urgency, we can’t spot the other team a nine-point lead and spend the rest of the game catching up," Ten Eyck said. "We show we can rally but we need to put ourselves in a spot where that’s not what we’re always doing is playing from behind."
Scoring—Wichita, Moojen (unassisted) 7:02; Chicago, Da Silva (unassisted) 7:41; Wichita, Moojen (Berenzon) 10:47; Chicago, Munoz (unassisted) 14:53. Penalties—Chicago, Farias (illegal sub); Chicago, Kletzien (tripping).
Scoring—Chicago, Radoncic (Farias), 1:10; Wichita, Villegas (Moojen) 4:34; Chicago, Munoz (Farias), 9:55; Chicago, Farias (unassisted) 12:03; Chicago, Radoncic (unassisted), 13:48; Chicago, Radoncic (Da Silva) 14:31. Penalties—Chicago, Radoncic (misconduct); Chicago, Farias (misconduct); Wichita, Worley (dangerous play); Chicago, Summerville (violent charge).
Scoring—Wichita, Ten Eyck (Berenzon), 3:21.
Scoring—Wichita, Moojen (Tiguinho) 3:13; Wichita, Ten Eyck (unassisted) 10:17. Penalty—Chicago, Erik (fourth foul, blue card).
Power play—Chicago 0 for 0, Wichita 1 for 3.
Shots on goal—Chicago, 16; Wichita, 19.
Goalies—Chicago, Richey 13 saves on 19 shots; Wichita, Sanaldo 9 saves on 16 shots, Lemons 0 saves on 0 shots.