There was one primary edict Saturday night for the Omaha Lancers — work hard sooner.
That's exactly what the Lancers did en route to a 5-2 victory over Fargo that extended Omaha's winning streak to five games.
“It was a good effort,” Lancers coach Brian Kaufman said. “That was the first time in the last three weeks I can say we played a good 60 minutes.”
Kaufman said that's what starting fast and keeping the pressure on can do for a team, especially when your team is 19-3-2 and the opponent just dropped to 5-15-2.
“Fargo has a really good team and that record doesn't reflect how much skill they have on that team,” Kaufman said. “Playing like we did proved to our guys why it's so important to take a game over early.”
The Lancers delighted the Ralston Arena crowd of 3,184 by scoring their first goal 27 minutes earlier than they did in Friday's 1-0 victory over Fargo.
Three minutes into the game, UNO recruit Jake Randolph sent a shot over the left shoulder of Force goalie Cameron Johnson into the net for his 12th goal of the season. Fargo tied the game 15 minutes later on a rebound goal by Garick Gray shortly after Omaha forward Luca Frigo was ejected for a checking-from-behind misconduct call.
But 36 seconds after Gray's goal, Ryan Tait took a slick pass from Jakob Forsbacka-Karlsson and scored his second goal of the season to give Omaha a 2-1 advantage heading into the first intermission. The puck bounced off the crossbar and back into the net behind Johnson.
The Lancers scored at the eight-minute mark of the second period when Forsbacka-Karlsson tipped home the rebound of a Tucker Poolman point shot.
Tyler Vesel then ran his United States Hockey League-leading goal total to 20 at 12:09 of the third period for a 4-1 lead. Fargo sliced that advantage back to two just more than one minute later, but another rapid response got the Lancers their fifth and final goal.
It was Poolman's turn to score, as the defenseman scored his seventh goal of the season. The power-play goal kept the Lancers from going 0 for 15 on man-advantage chances during the two-game series with the Force.
Next up for Omaha is a Wednesday game against Tri-City that is scheduled to begin at 7:05 p.m.