TULSA, Okla. – The Tulsa Oilers rolled to their first three-game winning streak of the season as they outlasted the Wichita Thunder 5-4 in a shootout on “Pink in the Rink” night at the BOK Center.
The Oilers improved to 15-27-3 and were successful in a shootout for the second time in the last three games. Tulsa has reeled off four-straight wins at home and is back to .500 (10-10-3) for the season on BOK Center ice.
After the first period the score was deadlocked 1-1, Sean Erickson sent a marvelous pass from blue line to blue line to spring Ben Gordon for a power play breakaway to put the Oilers up 1-0 just four minutes into the contest.
Gordon, who tallied six points in Tulsa’s victory on Friday, followed up a brilliant performance by chipping in three more points (1 goal, 2 assists) on Saturday.
The Thunder then capitalized on a power play opportunity when Greger Hanson tied up the score with 6:08 left in the opening period.
The second period saw three more power play goals, two of which came from the Oilers. Ryan Menei sent the puck into the net as it rebounded off Thunder goalie Torrie Jung right into Menei’s strike-zone. Drew Fisher took a pass from Gordon and directed a one-timer past Jung to make it 3-1 with 12:43 left in the second period.
With 45 seconds left in the middle stanza, Chad Painchaud beat Shane Madolora to keep Wichita within reach.
Wichita knotted the score 3-3 with 11:02 left in the third quarter on a Matt Robinson tip-in as the puck caromed off the post.
The Oilers wasted no time in answering as Fisher connected with Menei 21 seconds later.
The Thunder cleared their net and with 1:01 remaining Neil Trimm was wide open in front of the net to tap home a rebound and send the game to overtime.
Michel Beausoleil, Menei, Gordon, and Fisher each sent the puck past Jung in the shootout to earn the extra point for the Oilers. Menei took home first star honors and finished the affair with three goals and an assist.
The usual suspects, Gordon, Menei, Fisher, and Madolora have all played an integral role in the Oilers’ recent hot streak. In the last three games of the Oilers’ current home stand, the top line trio of Gordon, Menei, and Fisher has combined for 20 points. Madolora stoned three out of four Thunder attempts to cap off a brilliant night in which he had a season-high 46 saves.
Tulsa improved to 2-1 in shootouts and is now 3-5-0 against the rival Thunder this season.
The following images were recorded at the BOK Center on Saturday evening.* *
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