EDMONTON, AB — The Edmonton Oil Kings were unable to capture a critical two points tonight dropping a gut wrenching 5-4 decision to the Medicine Hat Tigers Friday night.
The Oil Kings had come into the contest having lost all five games to the Tigers this year. But a win would have made up for that putting them eight points up on the Tigers and help cement their wild card spot in the Eastern Conference.
The Oil Kings held a 4-3 lead down to the final minutes before being stunned in front of a crowd of 14,967 as the Tigers scored twice in the final 98 seconds to draw within four points of 8th place.
“I thought it was a pretty complete game plan,” said Head Coach Steve Hamilton. “I thought we were the better team tonight. A couple of individual mistakes at the end of the game and we don’t have anything to show for it.”
Edmonton got on the board first (and are 19-7-2-1 when they do so) courtesy of Aaron Irving blasting a powerplay point shot past Tigers netminder Nick Schneider for his 8th of the year. David Quenneville answered back for Medicine Hat also on the powerplay later that period.
The second frame saw the Tigers take a 3-2 lead thanks to goals from Max Gerlach and Ryan Jevne. Rookie Colton Kehler had a beautiful goal, his 16th on the year, as he took an Andrew Keop clearing pass and walked in sliding it short side behind Schneider. Schneider would stand on his head to close out the period robbing Kehler, Lane Bauer and Brandon Baddock all on point blank excellent scoring opportunities.
Edmonton came out flying in the third as Bauer and Kehler each scored in the first 1:29. They held that lead the rest of the way until the Tigers scored twice late leaving the Oil Kings speechless.
“That game was an emotional rollercoaster for sure,” said Irving. “We were up we were down. I think we just got too ahead of ourselves and we thought the outcome was already decided. A couple of individual mistakes, myself included, really cost us the game.”
The Oil Kings will now prepare for a home game Monday vs the Saskatoon Blades. Game time is 7pm.