The Oil Caps put forth a solid performance in front of their home fans on Friday night, defeating the OCN Blizzard by a score of 8-4 at Tundra Oil and Gas Place.
The Oil Caps got on the board first in the opening frame as Blake Sidoni’s 10thof the year at 7:53 on the power play made it 1-0. Tristen Cross’ eighth of the season less than a minute later (8:31) made it 2-0 before Tanner Andrew kept the good vibes going as he netted his 11thof the campaign at 13:39 to give the Oil Caps a three-goal lead. The Blizzard responded late in the period as Sequoia Swan’s seventh at 18:58 made it 3-1 after 20 minutes.
OCN would get to within one goal in the second as Riley Barraso’s first of the year at the 5:56 mark made it 3-2 however the Oil Caps would reclaim their two-goal advantage as Dylan Halliday picked up his 12thgoal of the season at 9:42 to make it 4-2 for Virden at the second intermission.
The third period saw a lot of pucks cross the goal line in what was an action-packed final 20 minutes. After Tanner Brewster of OCN scored with the man advantage at 5:08 to make it 4-3, the Oil Caps wound up responding with four straight tallies of their own off the sticks of Tristan Thompson (9:26), Sidoni’s second of the night at 14:15 (PP), Jack Einarson’s 12thof the year at 14:57 and just 16 seconds later, newcomer Jacob Evans’ first as an Oil Cap at 15:13 made it 8-3 for Virden.
OCN picked up a late goal as Barraso’s second of the season at 15:44 would round out the scoring.
Riley Wallace stopped 31 shots directed his way to pick up his sixth win of the season, while Kobey Clarke and Dorian Lagamiere combined to make 40 stops in the loss for OCN as they dropped to 15-25-2-0 on the year. Meanwhile, the Oil Caps improved to 21-14-3-4 and are now seven points up on the Dauphin Kings for fifth place in the MJHL standings.
“We were a little sluggish at times and I think it did take about a period and a half for us to get going and once we did, we had a pretty good third period,” said Troy Leslie, Oil Caps head coach and GM. “They played a little shorthanded and I think near the end just rolling our four lines, we were able to roll them down a little bit.”
Next up for the Oil Caps:Next Friday night against the Selkirk Steelers at TOGP. Game time: 7:30 p.m.