Juuso Mäenpää decided the match for Kalpa in overtime.
Keeper Roope Taponen has given HIFK’s goal in the last two games strong displays to such an extent that the responsibility will probably increase in the near future.
Taponen has played three games this season, the first of which resulted in a loss against Ilves in the early rounds. Last Saturday against TPS and Wednesday against Kalpa, Taponen allowed only one goal in regular time in each match.
According to Kuopio, HIFK still only got a point when Kalpa won the game Juuso Mäenpään with an overtime goal.
“A good fight from us, away games are always difficult after a long journey. We fought well, maybe an extra point was deserved,” Taponen, who made 21 saves, said after the match.
Goals had to wait until the third round. Kasper Simontaival led Kalpa in front of the goal in 43:58. Defender by Johan Motin however, the shot brought HIFK level before the half of the period.
One point increased HIFK’s balance to nine points from as many matches. Taponen believes that the direction is for the better, and the goalkeeper is already satisfied with the functionality of the defensive end in front of the nose.
“We’ve talked to the guys and been honest with each other. The fight has started to be found,” he says.
Last season, Taponen played a few games in the Liiga on loan at Ilves. The main venue was still Kiekko-Espoo.
This season, the 21-year-old guard has a good chance to take a more permanent place in the league.
“My own game is currently enough for the series. Last season’s mistakes have been ironed out,” says Taponen.
“It’s nice to play when guys sacrifice themselves. I enjoy every moment when I get to play.”
HIFK’s season continues on Friday with a home match against Oulun Kärppi.
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