TULSA, OK— It happens in every sport. No matter whether the game is played with a puck, or a ball, it seems that every team has another team who has their number, a team that when they play that no matter what they do, they always find a way to lose against them.
This season for the Tulsa Oilers it is the Missouri Mavericks.
Four times the Oilers and Mavericks have played this season and all four times saw the scoreboard tilted towards the fifth-year team based in Independence, Missouri by games end, and never by any more than two goals. Friday night would prove to be no exception as the Mavericks downed the Oilers in front of 4,773 in Tulsa’s BOK Center on Friday night.
It was an unusual game where the game’s first goal, the result of a converted Tulsa turnover by the Mavericks John Scott-Dickson at the 1:43 mark of the first period wound up being the game winner for Missouri, and set the Oilers off balance early on in the game. It proved to be a lead that the Mavericks would add to, but never relinquish.
The one and only time that the Oilers dented the twine behind Missouri goaltender Shane Owen came when they capitalized on a power play opportunity at the 9:54 mark of the second period when team captain Nathan Lutz unloaded a slapshot that rocketed into the Missouri net.
Unfortunately, the Maverick bracketed Lutz’s goal with goals from Obi Aduba with a little over two minutes elapsed in period, and what would be the Mavericks final goal by Trevor Kell at 10:37.
Oilers shooters opened fire on Owen in the game’s final minutes, sending some 13 shots his way. He turned them all aside and the game ended in a two-goal victory for Missouri. Shane Madolora, in the Tulsa net, managed to make 23 saves on 26 Missouri shots, and the Oilers went one-for-two on the power play.
The loss slips the Oilers below .500 to 19-20-3 on the year and into seventh place in the CHL standings with 41 points and 24 games remaining. It also closes out Tulsa’s longest home stand of the season where the Oilers won two games against the Brampton Beast, lost in a shootout to Wichita, lost to Allen once and the Mavericks twice for a grand total of five points out of a possible twelve during their time on home ice. In addition to all that, Tulsa is winless in its last four (0-3-1) and has recorded just five victories in its last 17 outings.
Friday is the last time the Mavericks will play in Tulsa this season. The Oilers travel to Independence on Saturday to complete the home-and-home series at 7:05pm in the IEC. From there they will travel to Moline, Il for a game with the Quad City Mallards next Friday night.
The next Tulsa Oiler home game will be on February 1st when they take on the Denver Cutthroats…the only other team they have not defeated thus far in the 2013-14 season, at 7:35pm in the BOK Center.
Photo by Kevin Pyle.