It was quite an arrival for the newest Rhino, Tomas Stastny. The forward stepped off the plane from the Czech Republic less than 24 hours before stepping on the ice for El Paso, then proceeded to score twice, assisting on two more goals as the Rhinos bounced the New Mexico Renegades, 11-2.
El Paso scored four goals in the first 8:56 of the game as the hosts dominated play from start to finish — quite a difference from losing a two-goal lead and the game in Thursday\’s series opener.
Stastny, Tyler Basham and Brendan Gust each scored twice; while Matt Tritsch, Alex Koopmeiners, Matt Pietrzykowski, Travis Oddy and Dallas Szustak each contributed a goal.
Starting goaltender Trent Caspar stopped 20 of 21 shots before being replaced by El Paso native Robert Robles for the third period. Robles stopped 12 of 13 shots in the final 20 minutes.
The Rhinos improve to 23-7-1, topping the WSHL\’s Mid-West Conference with 47 points. New Mexico drop to 13-13-2, but the Renegades 28 points keeps them in fourth place, making them eligible for the franchise\’s first-ever playoff berth.
El Paso has next weekend off before hosting the Park City Moose in two weeks. For tickets and information, contact the Rhinos front office at 915/479.PUCK (7825), or go to www.elpasorhinos.com.