Oil Caps head coach and GM Troy Leslie says a couple of key puck battles made the difference in what was a tightly-contested contest between the Virden Oil Capitals and the Steinbach Pistons on Friday night.
“You can’t take the easy way out of anything and you can’t put yourselves in those positions,” said Leslie after his club dropped a 4-2 decision to the Pistons at Tundra Oil and Gas Place.
After Steinbach got on the board first on the power play at the 11:16 mark of the first period on a goal by Daniel McKitrick, Dylan Thiessen replied for Virden, potting his seventh of the season approximately three minutes later.
Jeran Knorr would then score his 12th of the season to give the Oil Caps their first lead of the game at the 3:44 mark of the second before Jack Johnson replied for Steinbach (7:35) to tie the game after 40 minutes of play.
The third period saw Steinbach score twice – with goals from Easton Bennett and Nolan Ferguson at the 3:02 and 5:32 marks respectively – helping the Pistons improve to 18-6-1-0 on the season.
“We’ve got to learn from those things and we will,” Leslie said. “I thought for the most part we were pretty solid tonight. It was a pretty close game. Through the first two-thirds, it was anybody’s game.”
For the Oil Capitals, it’s the club’s second straight defeat after falling 5-2 to OCN on Wednesday night. Virden will look to rebound tomorrow night in what will be their fourth game in five nights, once again in front of their home fans, in the second game of a back-to-back against the Pistons.
“We got to learn from tonight and get ready for tomorrow,” Leslie said.
Matthew Thiessen stopped 39 of 41 shots to pick up the win in net for Steinbach, while Dalton Dosch turned aside 42 of 46 pucks in net in the loss for Virden, who dropped to 15-8-0-0 on the season.
Puck drop for tomorrow night’s game against the Pistons is slated for shortly after 7:30 p.m.