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Oil Kings Drop a Nail-Biter in Saskatoon

September 18, 2021 - Western Hockey League (WHL) - Edmonton Oil Kings News Release


Saskatoon, SK - The Saskatoon Blades (1-0-0-0) got a late power play goal to defeat the Edmonton Oil Kings (1-1-0-0) in pre-season action Friday night at the SaskTel Centre.

The Oil Kings came out with plenty of jump in the opening frame, more than doubling up the Blades in shots but couldn't find a way to solve rookie netminder Austin Elliott.  Of his 13 saves in the first period, his two best came off Edmonton forward Jacob Boucher who had two good looks on the same sequence at the top of the Blades crease but couldn't muscle the puck past Elliott.

In the second period, Boucher found a way to finally solve the young Saskatoon goaltender as he broke into the offensive zone, drove wide behind the Blades net and tucked in a wrap-around at the far post to give the visitors the 1-0 lead at the 8:12 mark of the period.  The Blades quickly answered with Brendan Lee taking advantage of a sloppy change by the Oil Kings as he got in alone and made no mistake just 2:07 later.  Kobe Verbicky restored the Oil Kings lead by being in the right spot at the right time as an errant breakout pass by the Blades re-directed off his skates in front of the Blades net and past an unsuspecting Elliott with just five minutes left in the middle stanza to send Edmonton to the intermission with the one goal lead.

The Blades wasted no time getting the game back on even terms in the third period as Brandon Lisowsky snuck in behind the Oil Kings defence and went upstairs to square the game at two apiece 3:33 in.  Josh Paulhus gave the Blades their first lead of the game after re-directing in a shot from Carter Streek at the 5:19 mark.  The Oil Kings answered back with an equalizer of their own at 8:18 of the period after Brendan Kuny deposited a one-timer from the right-wing circle on a power play thanks to a beautiful setup by Keagan Slaney.  The Oil Kings found themselves in penalty trouble all night long and it would catch up to them in the late stages of the game as Evan Patrician deposited the game-winning goal off a rebound on a 5-on-3 man-advantage for the Blades with just 6:45 left in regulation.

Oil Kings goaltender Colby Knight stopped 20 of the 24 shots he faced, while Elliott kicked out 27 of 30 shots.  Edmonton went 1-for-5 on the power play while Saskatoon was 1-for-7.

The Oil Kings are back in pre-season action Saturday, taking on the Blades once again in Saskatoon at 4:00 PM.

SCORING SUMMARY

NOTES:

The Oil Kings were without F Jake Neighbours (STL), F Dylan Guenther (ARI), F Carson Latimer (OTT), F Jakub Demek (VGS), F Jalen Luypen (CHI), F Josh Williams (PIT), D Simon Kubicek (EDM) and G Sebastian Cossa (DET) as they are all currently attending NHL training camps.

The Oil Kings dressed nine forwards and nine defencemen with D Blake Heward and D Keagan Slaney jumping to play forward.

Former Oil Kings F Kaid Oliver has joined the Minnesota Wild as a free agent training camp invite.

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