Oil Kings 2 – Cougars 1 (OT)
The Prince George Cougars will head on the road for their next five games with some much needed confidence. After a 4-2 victory Friday night, the Cougars then grabbed a single point Saturday after a 2-1 overtime loss to the Oil Kings. Ty Edmonds stopped 37 of the 39 shots he faced in goal and helped move the Cougars back to within just a single point of third place in the B.C. Division with 17 games left in their regular season schedule. Cole Benson had the OT winner for Edmonton at 2:12 of the extra period.
For a second straight game, the Cougars scored first. After Brandon Baddock took an instigator penalty from an early first period fight with Sam Ruopp, the Cougars took full advantage on the power play.
Jari Erricson forced a puck free down low beside the Edmonton net, and even though he was hauled down managed to force the puck to the left point from as he was sliding on the ice. The puck went straight to David Soltes who wired home the pass up high and in for his 10th of the season. It was the sixth power play goal of the season for David Soltes.
From there, the Oil Kings responded with a flurry of shots and chances, but for a second straight night Ty Edmonds shined in the Cougars net. In the first period he stopped all 15 shots he faced, and the Cougars took a 1-0 lead into the first intermission.
Neither team was able to score in the second period either, as Ty Edmonds stopped all 11 shots he faced from the Oil Kings while his counterpart Patrick Dea stopped all eight of the Cougars chances at the other end.
After 40 minutes the Cougars led 1-0 despite being outshot 26-13.
On their seventh power play opportunity of the game, the Edmonton Oil Kings finally solved Ty Edmonds at the 5:58 mark of the third period. Oil Kings captain Ashton Sautner took a pass at the left point and snuck his shot through a maze of bodies and in past Edmonds for his 12th goal of the season.
The teams traded third period chances, but neither Dea or Edmonds would budge. The Cougars did have a full two minute five-on-three power play chance in the final minutes, but were unable to capitalize, and for the fourth time in the Cougars season overtime was required.
Cole Benson secured the second point for the Edmonton Oil Kings at the 2:12 mark off of overtime off a three-on-two rush. He took a pass from Luke Bertolucci off the rush and then snuck a shot through Edmonds and in for his seventh goal of the season.
The single point helps improve the Cougars record to 21-31-2-1 and their 45 points has them trailing third place Kamloops by just a single point in the race for the final playoff spot in the B.C. Division and Western Conference.
Ty Edmonds capped a stellar weekend with a first-star performance. He faced 75 shots over the course of the weekend and turned aside 71 of them to get his confidence headed in the right direction.
The Cougars killed off six of their seven penalties on Saturday and went one-for-five on the power play.
Next up for the Cougars, a five game road trip that kicks off on Monday afternoon in Kelowna against the Rockets.