The Virden Oil Capitals came up with a gutsy 3-1 victory on the road last night in Selkirk to push the Steelers to the brink of elimination.
Both teams were a little tentative early with the Oil Caps generating some early pressure until Selkirk would open the scoring on Ryan Piwniuk’s second of the playoffs at 11:03 of the first.
Things would open up a bit from there and Kolten Kanaski would tie things up with a power play goal. His 6th of the playoffs at 16:14 of the first from Wojciechowski and Dalke.
Things were tight again in the second period with both teams trading chances but the score would remain knotted at 1 through the second period.
The Steelers would come out flying in the third but rookie netminder Riley Wallace stood tall in the Oil Caps net making some huge saves especially on Selkirk’s very dangerous powerplay.
Then at 12:20 of the third period Kanaski would strike again on the powerplay with a nifty feed from Hunter Cloutier and Ben Dalke to make it 2-1 Oil Caps.
The Steelers would pour everything they had at the net in the final minutes of the period but the Oil Caps defended hard and Wallace again made some huge saves to hang on to the lead. The Oil Caps were then able to spring captain Ben Dalke on a breakaway and he would put the game away into an empty net with his second of the playoffs at 19:25 of the third unassisted.
Assistant coach Tyson Ramsey has this to say:
“I thought our group again was real focused on staying structured and playing well inside the defensive zone. Because of this I thought we were able to withstand some heavy pressure from a very skilled Steeler forward group.
Obviously our goaltending was real solid and you have to give our D a ton of credit for what they have done in this series. Then Kanaski, what can you say, he did what he does best and came up clutch when we needed him.
I thought it was a real good effort from top to bottom and we will need to be equally as good or better to try and finish it tonight at home.”
The Oil Caps will try to finish things off in game 6 tonight at Tundra Oil and Gas Place with puck drop at 7:30.