Story and Photographs by Glenn Ivens (www.javalon.smugmug.com)
The Edmonton Oil Kings rolled into town on Tuesday for their only appearance at Save On Foods Memorial Center for the 2011-2012 regular season.
The Oil Kings took full advantage of a lack luster performance from the Victoria Royals to earn an 8-2 win.
Oil Kings get out of the gate early.
It didn’t take Edmonton long to get on the scoreboard, Curtis Lazar beat Victoria’s Keith Hamilton just 33 seconds into the opening frame, redirecting a pass from Michael St. Croix.
This was followed shortly after by a spirited scrap between the Royals’ Tim Traber and the Oil Kings’ Jordan Peddle, with Traber earning the clear decision.
The Royals went on the power play mid way through the 1st period, when Lazar was assessed 4 minutes for high sticking. The Royals applied the pressure but an acrobatic save by Edmonton’s Laurent Brossoit prevented the puck from crossing the line.
The Royals did capitalize late on the man advantage when Zane Jones slid a pass from Logan Nelson past the outstretched leg of Brossoit to tie the game 1-1.
Edmonton would go back on top at the 17:11 when a slap shot from the point by Cody Corbett found the back of the net after hitting a body in front of Hamilton.
The Oil Kings outshot the Royals 10-5 and headed into the 1st intermission with a 2-1 lead.
More bad news for the Royals as leading scorer Kevin Sundher left partway through the first period with an undisclosed injury and did not return.
2nd period Woes.
The 2nd period saw the speedy Oil Kings put 4 goals on the board to the Royals 1. It started with a power play marker off the stick of St. Croix at 5:10, Rhett Rachinski then deflected a Klarc Wilson pass at 9:56 to stake a 4-1 Oil Kings lead.
Royals’ Robin Soudek, known more for his soft hands around the net, dropped the gloves then quickly dropped Oil Kings’ Ryan Dech midway through the period to give the Royals a little energy.
Victoria cut into the lead at 14:58 when Logan Nelson recorded his 8th of the season and 2nd point on the night, after pouncing on a loose put in the slot and firing it past Brossoit. Edmonton put a stop to any momentum that Victoria was building when a falling Stephane Legault beat Hamilton at 15:14.
Hamilton was replaced by Jared Rathjen after the 5th goal but Edmonton wasn’t done yet, they added their 6th when Kristian Pelss bulged the twine.
Edmonton seals it in the 3rd.
The 3rd period saw Edmonton add another power play goal from St. Croix at 3:57 for his second of the game then Legault notched his second at 8:24 to round out the scoring.
The Royals were outshot 35-19 in the game and Coach and General Manager Marc Habscheid was not too pleased with his team’s performance. “We didn’t spin a wheel, our game is based on work ethic and structure and we had neither tonight. That was our worst game by far.”
The Royals have three days to regroup and refocus, before they round out there seven game home stand with a pair of games against the Red Deer Rebels on Saturday and Sunday. Game time on Saturday is 7:05pm and Sunday is 5:05pm.