Oil Kings previal over Wheaties

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December 31, 2013, Edmonton, AB (ISN) – There’s just something about New Year’s Eve for Henrik Samuelsson. The Edmonton Oil Kings forward recorded his first career hat trick on the final day of 2012, and followed that up with a two goal performance Tuesday at Rexall Place in Edmonton’s 5-4 overtime win against the Brandon Wheat Kings.

“It’s been good to me,” said Samuelsson about the New Year’s game. “I was hoping for the hat trick (again), but we got the win, and that’s the most important thing.”

Edgars Kulda scored the game winner 1:47 into the extra frame, burying a shot from the top of the left circle just seconds after ringing one off the iron from nearly the same spot. The goal ended a three-game losing streak for Edmonton and salvaged two points on a night the Oil Kings blew a 4-1 lead.

“I thought the work ethic from Eddie just before that game-winning goal was outstanding, and that’s the type of work ethic that we need to have night in and night out,” said Edmonton Head Coach Derek Laxdal.

“They battled back. It just took a solid effort for us to get that overtime goal,” added defenceman Ashton Sautner.

“We just tried to stay composed, go out and keep playing our game. We battled to take it to overtime … it was a good effort, and we have to learn from that.”

Samuelsson opened the scoring with a power-play goal from the slot 2:31 into the game off a nice feed from Dysin Mayo, the only man advantage Edmonton would have all game. The two hooked up again shortly before the end of the period to give Edmonton a 3-1 lead as Samuelsson tucked a Mayo rebound past Brandon netminder Curtis Honey.

Brandon Ralph and Luke Bertolucci also scored for the Oil Kings, while Ryan Pulock, Rihards Bukarts, Peter Quenneville and Tanner Kaspick tallied for Brandon, who went 2-4 on the power play. Mayo had three assists for the Oil Kings, and Ralph’s marked the first goal of his career at Rexall Place and first since scoring twice in a win over Kamloops on November 8.

“I got the puck in deep there … and then Baddock popped it out to the slot and I just had a wide open, sort of short breakaway,” Ralph explained. “It’s a great feeling. I’ve been waiting for it awhile, especially to get one at home.”

Tristan Jarry made 22 saves for his 23rd win of the season, while Honey made 33 in the Brandon goal.

The Oil Kings will be back in action Friday, November 3 when they host the Moose Jaw Warriors.

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