22 in 22 Series: Topeka Capitals
September 4, 2013
The 22 in 22 series features an in-depth look into all 22 teams in the NA3HL for the 2013-14 season, with a new team being highlighted daily, leading all the way up until the start of the regular season on Saturday, September 7th as four NA3HL teams take to the ice on Opening Night.
22 in 22 will go in-depth into each NA3HL team and will include interviews with all 22 head coaches in the NA3HL, as they provide fans with their expectations and outlook for the 2013-14 season, including taking a look at their roster and their strengths as a team for the upcoming season.
It will also take a look back on the 2012-13 season and how each team fared and what they accomplished. Best of all, 22 in 22 is done to provide the fans of the NA3HL with an inside look at their favorite team and what to expect.
Head Coach: Anthony Bohn
2012-13 Record: N/A
2013-14 Division: South
Home Opener: Sat. October 12th, 2013 3:00 PM vs. Dallas at Landon Arena
Fans coming to Landon Arena in Topeka to see the Topeka RoadRunners of the North American Hockey League (NAHL) will have a reason to arrive early to games as the Topeka Capitals of the North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) will take center stage before each RoadRunners game this upcoming season. Led by the same ownership group of the NAHL’s RoadRunners, the Capitals will be another reason to solidify Topeka as a certified junior hockey hotbed.
Currently there are two NA3HL teams owned by NAHL ownership groups (Alexandria Blizzard and North Iowa Bulls), but the Topeka franchise will be the first team to play at the same arena as their NAHL counterpart. Landon Arena is a premier venue for junior hockey with a capacity for over 7,000 fans, and immediately becomes one of the largest venues in the NA3HL. The Capitals will play in the afternoons on Friday’s and Saturday’s with the majority of their games coming before the NAHL RoadRunners play their games.
Led by Head Coach Anthony Bohn, a former RoadRunner from when the team was based in Santa Fe, New Mexico, the Capitals will take the ice and have a roster full of players that have the talent to develop into junior and NCAA players, according to Bohn. Not new to the NA3HL, Coach Bohn previously was a coach for the Peoria Mustangs in the NA3HL and his league experience should be vital to the success of the expansion franchise.
Coach Bohn is confident that his team will be competitive during their first season, but will be successful at developing players for future play. “Our goal is to develop players not only for the RoadRunners, but for other teams in the North American Hockey League as well.” The RoadRunner franchise is well known for moving their players on to the NCAA level.
The Capitals will be reporting in late September with just enough time to get ready for their first game on October 12th at home versus South division rival the Dallas Jr. Stars. Coach Bohn wants the team to be a place that NAHL teams can count on when looking for players.“As a franchise we want to be a go-to for NAHL teams to find players mid-season if they run into injuries or need a call up.”
The relationship between the Capitals and the RoadRunners is already paying dividends as the team will be sharing the NAHL franchises facilities and Bohn is excited to uphold the reputation started by the RoadRunners. “Our expectation is to come and uphold the high standard that the RoadRunner franchise has built in Topeka.”
Getting fans to come out to Landon Arena should not be a problem for the Capitals as Coach Bohn acknowledges the great job the Topeka front office has been doing at marketing the team. “Since the team was announced, the RoadRunners front office has made sure our team is being noticed by the community,” Said Bohn. “The RoadRunners have a tremendous ownership group with Mr. Stone (RoadRunners Owner Donald Stone) and they have done everything to make sure we have everything we need to run a successful franchise.”
Season ticket holders for the RoadRunners will gain free admission to Capitals games while all other tickets will be made available at $5. The Capitals front office is confident this will open up hockey to a new group of people in Topeka, who may not have ever seen a junior hockey game before. In addition to the discounted ticket price, parking will also be free to any fan that attends a Capitals game.
Building an expansion team is not the easiest of tasks but with the support of the RoadRunners franchise, the Capitals will surely become a mainstay just as the RoadRunners have since moving to Topeka.
Next up in the 22 in 22 series: Twin City Steel