Friday, April 4, 2014
Oil Kings Nearly Perfect in Battle Royal with Brandon
Edmonton got the ball rolling thanks to a smart, simple play from Edgars Kulda who chipped and chased down a puck then set up Brett Pollock for the games opening goal just 1:50 in. 35 ticks of the clock later another Oil King import Mads Ellar grabbed a lose puck and slid his first of the playoffs past Brandon tender and Edmonton native Jordan Papirny for a 2-0 lead as the home team outshot the visitors 12-3.
The second period was more of the same as the Oil Kings peppered Papirny with 19 shots, beating him twice on goals from Ashton Sautner and Kulda for a 4-0 40 minute lead.
Henrik Samuelson got off the playoff schnide in the final frame zipping one under the bar to finish out the scoring. Edmonton tripled the Wheat Kings in shots at 45-15 and went 2-7 on the power play while killing off both Brandon man advantage situations.
It was a truly impressive effort by Edmonton while Brandon will need to regroup or this series won't last long.
Of note, Brandon goalie and Edmonton product Curtis Honey didn't dress. Head Coach/G.M. Kelly McCrimmon told me after the game Honey was injured in practice recently and isn't available right now. The plan is to call someone up until Honey is ready to return. He did dress in the first round as back up.
Pollock now has 4 goals in 5 playoff games. Tristan Jarry wasn't busy in the Oil Kings net but did make a couple of point blank saves to preserve the shut out. Curtis Lazar picked up 2 helpers, but his next goal will tie him for the all time playoff lead in Edmonton.
Game 2 goes Saturday at noon Edmonton time.