TULSA, OK—It wasn’t nearly as dramatic as the 10-8 nail biter they pulled off on Saturday night, but the Tulsa Oilers managed to get it done against the Allen Americans on Sunday afternoon as the battled the 2013 CHL Champions on home ice for the third straight time in as many days. Thanks to brutal scheduling by the CHL, the Oilers have seen action with Allen more times (8) than with any other team, plenty of time to get some really fierce animosity going.
So it was on Sunday afternoon as the first period went scoreless and only generated 14 shots combined. Ben Gordon finally broke the deadlock with just 3 minutes remaining in the Second period when Ben Gordon took a long pass from goalie Ross MacKinnon and with an Americans player riding on his back he cruised in on Allen goalie Bryan Pitton and punched the puck through him to give Tulsa a 1-0 lead.
After Pitton misplayed the puck deep in the Americans zone Brandon Coccimiglio hit the wide open goal with a shot to extend the Oilers lead to 2-0 at the 2:52 mark. Then at 4:24 Michel Beausoleil extended his consecutive goal scoring run to six games straight off a neat feeder pass from Todd Robinson to push the Oilers lead to 3-1. The Americans response came swiftly as John Snowden jammed a loose puck past MacKinnon only 17 seconds after Beausoleil’s tally.
Daniel Tetrault added a goal to pull the visitors to within a goal but that was all the Americans could generate, even with an ill-timed penalty in the game’s final minutes. Things became tense in the game’s final minute as the Oilers committed a questionable hooking minor assessed on Todd Robinson allowed the Americans to turn a man advantage situation into a 6-on-4 power play, but once again an American miscue in the Oilers zone led to a turnover, and Ryan Cramer sent the puck into the empty Allen net to seal the win for the home team.
Like on Saturday night, violence was abundant, and virtually unchecked. Referee Zac Blazic called most of the penalties on retaliation and that served to tip what was essentially a dominant performance on the part of the Oilers to where the Americans had the opportunity to tie the game. The bad blood that began in Allen spilled over the Red River into Tulsa as well, as five fights broke out. The warrior for the Oilers was Alexandre Beuregrd, who hooked up three times with different opponents scoring two standing draws and a knockout.
The win improves Tulsa’s record to 9-7-2 and puts them in a tie with the Missouri Mavericks for 4th place in the standings, at least for now. It also improves the Oilers home record to an even 5-5 on home ice with no overtime losses. In addition, the Oilers head-to-head record with the defending champions improved to 3-4-1 with one game left to play in Allen on December 28th.
From here Tulsa begins a three-game road trip beginning with the Oilers first-ever visit to St. Charles to face the Chill on Wednesday night, then or to Independence to take on the Missouri Mavericks the day after Thanksgiving. From there it’s on to Moline, Il for the first meeting between Tulsa and the Quad City Mallards on November 30th.
Another first time meeting occurs a week from Friday when the Oilers host the Arizona Sundogs on December 6th. Tickets for that game and all of the Oilers remaining home games are on sale at the BOK Center Box Office or at the Oilers office at 9128 E. 46th Street.
Photo by Kevin Pyle.