October 23, 2013, Saskatchewan (ISN) – The Edmonton Oil Kings may have only had five defencemen in the lineup-three of them rookies-but that didn’t stop them from putting in a strong defensive performance Wednesday in a 3-1 win over the Moose Jaw Warriors in Moose Jaw.
Playing without 20-year-old Cody Corbett and 17-year-old Dysin Mayo, both of whom have been out for over a week, and missing New York Islanders first round pick Griffin Reinhart, who is currently listed as day-to-day, Edmonton (7-6-0-1) still outshot Moose Jaw (5-7-1-2) 40-29 and killed all five Warriors power plays. It was the first time this season the Oil Kings had won back-to-back games, and the win vaults Edmonton from 10th in the WHL Eastern Conference to fourth.
“Give the five kids credit. The guys did a great job of keeping their shifts short,” said Edmonton Head Coach Derek Laxdal. “(Moose Jaw) came at them pretty hard, they were physical on them, and the guys hung in there. They did a great job of stepping up.”
Tristan Jarry made 28 saves for his third straight win and allowed two or fewer goals for the sixth straight start.
Things didn’t look so hot for the Oil Kings early on as Brayden Point got the Warriors on the board just 35 seconds into the game with a blast from the point. From then on, however, Edmonton controlled most of the play, and the shot clock, en route to the win.
“I thought the guys played a real great team game. I thought they stood up for each other in the fights, I thought after the first shift, we got caught off guard, but after we kind of settled down and we had some really good shifts we could build on,” Laxdal said.
“I thought the second period we took the game over five-on-five. The only time we got tin trouble was when we took penalties.”
The Oil Kings evened the score later in the first, as Brandon Baddock crashed the net on a two-on-one and was credited with a goal off a shot by Aaron Irving. That score held until the third period when Riley Kieser won a race for the puck behind the Warriors net and fed Edgars Kulda with a quick pass that Kulda potted behind Paulic.
“Riley Kieser had a great forecheck on the second goal, and Eddie got rewarded by going to the net,” Laxdal said.
Kieser wrapped up the scoring with his third of the season into the empty net.
The game was the first of eight straight on the road for the Oil Kings, who have vacated Rexall Place to make room for the Canadian Finals Rodeo. They’ll be back in action Friday night in Regina against the 7-6-0-0 Pats.