In hockey, seeing the numbers ‘6’ and ‘1’ on the scoreboard is only fun when it’s your team that’s being represented by the ‘6’. That wasn’t the case for the Edmonton Oil Kings, though, as the Shawinigan Cataractes tallied five unanswered goals (and one that had a weak response) in their 6-1 win over the Oil Kings tonight. Meaning: The Cataractes are going on to the Memorial Cup semi-final, and the Oil Kings are heading home empty-handed. (That is, if you don’t count the still-recent WHL Championship…)
Goals in the first and final two minutes of the opening period were the exact motivation the Edmonton Oil Kings needed to get their momentum going for Game Seven. Add two more second period goals and a stunning goaltender who only allowed one himself, and what do you get?
The Ed Chynoweth Cup and a trip to the Memorial Cup tournament.
After sweeping their first two series and winning their third 4-1, the Edmonton Oil Kings are now in a position that’s not quite as comfortable as they’d like. After winning the first game against the Portland Winterhawks, they’ve lost back-to-back games (something they haven’t done since November) and are now down 2-1 in the series.
Through the first period, the game remained scoreless. The highlight? Keegan Lowe and Joe Morrow were being less than friendly throughout the opening frame, which eventually ended in a fight halfway through the first. Both landed punches but it was Morrow who ended up getting the edge on Lowe.
Portland dominated the scoreboard during the second period, getting on it just under five minutes in and doing it twice more on the power play at 12:06 and 12:35. Thanks to goals from Sven Barschi, Ty Rattie and Oliver Gabriel, the Winterhawks went from being tied with Edmonton at 0 to having a 3-0 lead.
Twenty seconds into the third period, it was clear that those three goals had been somewhat of a wake-up call when Henrik Samuelsson beat Mac Carruth to get his team on the board. Only minutes later, Portland’s Brendan Leipsic gave his team a three-goal lead. At 7:16, Martin Gernat cut that lead to two, and Keegan Lowe made it a one-goal game just under three minutes later. Besides the fact that Edmonton is now playing from behind in the series for the first time this playoffs, they were also dealt a casualty in Mitch Moroz, who was hit by William Wrenn during a goal celebration. He needed medical attention, but Wrenn wasn’t given a penalty. Nobody wanted to comment on it, though.
Playing from behind is never easy; the Oil Kings were given a prime example of just how tough it is tonight, and hopefully they’ll be able to do a better job of it for the series.
Kootenay Ice vs. Edmonton Oil Kings – March 25 and 28, 2012
Over 8,400 people were in attendance on Sunday to watch the Edmonton Oil Kings take on the Kootenay Ice at Rexall Place for the second game of their best-of-seven series. The Oil Kings went into the game with a 1-0 series lead and were looking to double it. They did, thanks to goals from Micheal St. Croix, Tyler Maxwell, Curtis Lazar and Keegan Lowe. Lazar and St. Croix were named the second and third stars, respectively, and the team was confident going into Wednesday night’s game in Kootenay. The Oil Kings fell 2-1 during the first period, before the Ice extended their lead in the third. Edmonton went into the final period down by two, and managed five unanswered goals to power their team to a 6-3 win. Five different scorers (Griffin Reinhart, Keegan Lowe, Kristians Pelss, Micheal St. Croix and Henrik Samuelsson) showed up in the third, along with a goal from third star Curtis Lazar in the first. Defenseman Kristians Pelss was given the honour of first star, and the Edmonton Oil Kings moved one step closer to sweeping the first round.