Courtesy of Flames.com
Even without the three Oiler amigos Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle and Magnus Paajarvi in the line up tonight, the Oilers prospects battled past the Calgary Flames prospects at the Young Stars Tournament on Tuesday night.
There was strong goaltending on both ends with Abbotsford Heat goalie Leland Irving minding the net for the Flames and Medicine Hat Tigers goaltender Tyler Bunz held strong on the other end. The Flames trailed on the shot clock for most of the game however led the Oilers 37-35 at the end of the game.
Hitmen alumni Alex Plante got the lone goal for the Oilers in the opening frame and added an empty net to help lift the Oilers to a 5-3 victory. Greg Nemisz and John Negrin both picked up power play goals for the Flames in a second period that saw six goals and 12 penalties with two fights. Keith Seabrook added an unassisted goal at the second period buzzer but three wasn’t enough to solve the Oilers.
The Flames will take part in an afternoon practice Wednesday but do not play their final game until Thursday where they face-off with the Vancouver Canucks at 1:00 pm MT.
The first two penalties of the game are awarded to Oilers prospect James Livingston back to back starting just over three minutes into the opening frame.
Flames goaltender Leland Irving being tested early in this first period as the Oilers have had a few chances of their own including a shot off the point. Shots were 10-4 for the Oilers.
With just under six minutes to play in the period, Mikael Backlund heads to the box for hooking putting the Oilers on the man advantage. Ryan Martindale fed Alex Plante at the top of the circle, wound up and fired a hard slap shot right through the legs of Irving to make it 1-0 Oilers.
Flames prospect John Armstrong would take another minor penalty for the final two minutes of the period but the score would remain 1-0 Oilers after 20 minutes of play. Shot clock favours the Oilers 16 to 7.
Nolan Toigo heads to the box just 19 seconds into the period. Then with 10 seconds remaining in Toigo’s penalty, Dominik Schlumpf keeps the Oilers down a man by taking a boarding penalty.
With a little over a minute left in the Oilers second penalty, Lance Bouma starts the play off for the Flames. He marched into the zone, danced around his check and just when it looked like he would go for a wrap-around, passed the puck onto the stick of Greg Nemisz who finds the back of the net and ties the game 1-1.
Minutes later, Oilers take another penalty allowing the Flames to keep buzzing. The Oilers almost got out of the man-down situation however with one second left on the penalty, John Negrin fired a hard slap shot from between the circles beating Oilers goaltender Tyler Bunz. Flames up 2-1.
Just a few short minutes later, the Oilers begin to play catch-up. Ryan Martindale set up to Mike Thomas in front of net minder Leland Irving. Thomas finds a home for the puck and ties the game 2-2 with 12 minutes to play in the second frame.
On a rare occation of 4-on-3 hockey took place just after the Oilers second goal when Greg Nemisz took a roughing call. Chris Vande Velde converted on the power play to give the Oilers their second lead of the game. Pelss and Livingston pick up the assists.
The fun wasn’t over for the Oilers as they picked up their fourth goal of the night. This time it’s Tyler Pitlick gets credit as the Oilers prospects steal the momentum from the Flames. 4-2 Oilers.
Things then began to get physical…real quick. Just after the Oilers fourth goal, 6-foot-7 Flames heavy weight Chris Breen and Oilers heavy weight Cameron Abney dropped the gloves in an even tilt. Abney would be the winner of this one as he spit open Chris Breen.
It didn’t stop there as seconds after Breen left the ice, Ryley Grantham and Jordan Bandfeld decided to take a turn at the fighting fun. Left’s and right’s landed on either side of the match and as expected, both pick up fighting majors.
With seconds left on the clock in the second period, Keith Seabrook fired a hard slap shot from just inside the blue line beating Tyler Bunz top shelf at the buzzer. Flames tighten the gap to 4-3 as they head to the second intermission. Shots are 26-23 for the Oilers.
Flames net minder Leland Irving holding strong for the Flames in the first half of the third period helping kill off a cross-checking penalty to Bryan Cameron. Pace has slowed down since the buzzer at the end of the second.
Near the midway mark of the third period, Ryan Martindale heads to the box putting the Flames on the power play. Jon Rheault with a great chance down low ends up tripping up his defender and heads to the box putting the Oilers on the man advantage.
With five minutes left in regulation, Lance Bouma gets a boarding call for slamming an Oiler into the boards in front of the Flames bench. The hit creates a fight between Nolan Toigo and Lance Bouma. Both get five minutes for fighting. Score still 4-3 Oilers.
With time winding down for the Flames, they began to play desperate hockey. With just over a minute to play and Flames with possession, Leland Irving head to the bench for the extra attacker. The Flames banged away at Tyler Bunz but couldn’t find the back of the net to tie the game in time.
The Oilers managed to clear the puck and drew a tripping penalty which resulted in an empty net goal by Alex Plante to put the final at 5-3. Shots at the end of 60 minutes were 37-35 for the Flames.
Author: Kristi Hennessy