Oil Kings foiled by Giants

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February 22, 2014, Edmonton, AB (ISN) – Pink at the Rink left the Edmonton Oil Kings feeling a little blue.

Despite 9,812 fans turning Rexall Place into a sea of pink, the Oil Kings (43-15-1-1) put forth a lacklustre effort in a 5-1 loss to the Vancouver Giants (30-24-7-3) Saturday night.

“Where do you want to start? Take bad penalties, it ends up in the back of your net, you’re not going to win games,” said Oil Kings head coach Derek Laxdal. “”You’ve got to give Vancouver credit, they did everything they needed to.”

The Oil Kings fell behind 3-0 after the first period and allowed two more goals before the midway point in the second while struggling to muster sustained pressure on the Vancouver net.

“Our best players have got to be our best players, and let’s be honest, tonight … we were not at the top of our game,” Laxdal said.

“That’s up for us to get ready and have a good start and push the pace, and we weren’t able to do that tonight,” added Curtis Lazar.

Jackson Houck scored a pair for Vancouver, while Joel Hamilton had three assists. Carter Popoff, Trent Lofthouse and Dalton Sward also scored for the Giants.

Lazar had the lone Edmonton goal, giving him tallies in four straight games. Cody Corbett picked up an assist for his 55th point of the season, tying him with Martin Gernat for the single-season franchise record for points by a defenceman.

Payton Lee made 32 saves to get the win for Vancouver. Tyler Santos allowed five goals on 15 shots before being replaced by Tristan Jarry midway through the second period. Jarry stopped all 12 shots he faced.

The Oil Kings wore special pink jerseys, along with pink sticks used by the players in-game, were auctioned off after the game. In total, $32,765 was raised, with net proceeds going to in support of Sorrentino’s Compassion House, the Alberta Cancer Foundation and the Prairies/Northwest Territories chapter of the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation.

Edmonton will be back in action Tuesday when they begin a home-and-home series with the Medicine Hat Tigers in the Hat.

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