Morning Star Staff/Oil Kings Web
In a span of 128 seconds Friday night, the Edmonton Oil Kings booked their ticket to their third straight Western Hockey League Eastern Conference final.
The Oil Kings scored three goals in that 2:08 span late in the first period, taking control of a back-and-forth game to stop the Brandon Wheat Kings 5-1 to take their second round series in five games.
Vernon’s Curtis Lazar set up the winner for the Oil Kings, who will play either the Kootenay Ice for Medicine Hat Tigers in the Eastern final.
Vernon’s Zach McPhee had one assist as the Ice grounded the Tigers 7-4 Thursday night, taking a 3-1 series stranglehold.
“We came out kind of sluggish in the first 10 minutes, but then I thought we responded in the second half of the first period,” said Oil Kings’ forward Henrik Samuelsson, who had a goal and an assist for Edmonton. “It was just a great team effort.”
Samuelsson got the Oil Kings on the board, keeping a loose puck alive at the side of the Brandon net, then freeing his stick from a pile-up to knock it in past Brandon netminder Jordan Papirny for his second goal of the playoffs.
Brett Pollock made it 2-0 just a couple shifts later, from Lazar, nd 23 seconds after that, Reid Petryk got his first of the playoffs off a beautiful feed from Ashton Sautner, putting the home side up 3-0 after one period.
“We talked about having a shark mentality … we wanted to get on the attack and really make them pay for their turnovers and work them down low and stuff,” said Oil Kings’ forward Mitch Moroz, who also had a goal and an assist.
Cody Corbett also tallied for the Oil Kings, while Tristan Jarry made 19 saves in front of 6,356 fans at Rexall Place.
Jaedon Descheneau scored a hat trick, including the go-ahead goal late in the third period to cap a stunning comeback as the Ice downed visiting Medicine Hat.
Luke Philp had a goal and three assists while Sam Reinhart netted a goal and a pair of helpers for the Ice, who trailed 4-1 in the later stages of the second frame but responded with six unanswered goals.
Chase De Leo scored twice and Oliver Bjorkstrand netted 1+3 as the Portland Winterhawks defeated the visiting Victoria Royals 5-1 in Game 5 of their Western Conference second-round series. Steven Hodges scored for the Royals.
Portland took the series 4-1 and will now go to the Western Conference championship series for a fourth consecutive season. The Hawks will face the Kelowna Rockets, the regular-season champs.
Kelowna hosts Game 1 in the final series Friday night at Prospera Place. The second games goes Saturday night back at Prospera.
Portland wins best-of-seven series 4-1
d win in as many nights.
Curtis Valk scored and set up another for the Tigers in the loss.
Kootenay leads best-of-seven series 3-1