Lethbridge, AB – The Lethbridge Hurricanes hosted the Medicine Hat Tigers in Game 4 on Wednsday night at the ENMAX Centre in hopes of going up three games to one but a come from behind 3-2 overtime victory by the Tigers tied the series at 2-2.
The Hurricanes, who were beat up and missing five regulars in Game 3 on Tuesday night, received some help as both Zak Zborosky and Calen Addison returned to the line-up for Game 4.
The Tigers came out flying in the first period as they looked to take an early lead on the road. Aided by a power play, Medicine Hat jumped out to a 10-0 shot advantage but could not solve Stuart Skinner who was sharp early. The ‘Canes opened the scoring on their third shot of the night as Giorgio Estephan banged home a loose puck for his eighth of the post-season at the 10:25 mark – Egor Babenko and Brennan Menell picked up the assists on the opening goal. The Hurricanes struck again at the 17:22 mark as Babenko snapped home his fourth of the playoffs off the rush to give the ‘Canes a 2-0 lead – Brady Pouteau earned his first career playoff point with the lone assist on the goal. The Tigers held the shot advantage 17-7 in the opening period.
It was all Tigers in the second period as they pushed hard looking to get on the board. Medicine Hat outskated the ‘Canes for most of the period and outshot the ‘Canes 14-6 in the middle frame. Skinner was outstanding in the middle frame making countless big saves. The Tigers would finally get on the board with just 1:54 left in the period as a bouncing puck came right in front to Chad Butcher who whacked it into the gaping net to get the Tigers within one as they trailed Lethbridge 2-1 after forty minutes of play.
In the third period the Tigers continued their dominance. Medicine Hat outshot Lethbridge 19-9 in the final twenty minutes. The Hurricanes were penalized twice in quick succession resulting in a five-on-three power play for the Tigers midway through the period and while the Tigers didn’t score while up two they did tie the game on the five-on-four power play as Max Gerlach snapped home his second of the playoffs at the 13:28 mark. The ‘Canes had a power play themselves with five minutes to go in the game but were unable to find the net as the game went to overtime.
The first overtime had a frantic start as both teams had glorious opportunities to end the game but both goaltenders stood tall. The Tigers would win the game at the 11:32 mark of overtime as John Dahlstrom snapped home his fifth of the playoffs beating Skinner over the glove to give the Tigers a 3-2 win.
The Hurricanes were outshot 9-8 in overtime and 59-30 in the hockey game. The ‘Canes went 0/3 on the power play while the Tigers were 1/4.
Three stars of the game were:
1) ‘Canes – #74 Stuart Skinner – 56 saves
2) Tigers – #12 John Dahlstrom – 1 goal, 1 assist
3) ‘Cane – #22 Egor Babenko – 1 goal, 1 assist
The series, which is now tied at two games apiece, shifts to Medicine Hat for Game 5 on Friday night at the Canalta Centre before it returns to Lethbridge for Game 6 on Sunday evening.
Tickets for Game 6 at the ENMAX Centre go on sale on Thursday morning at 9:00am and can be purchased online, by calling 403-329-SEAT (7328) or by visiting the ENMAX Centre or Yates Ticket Centre’s.
(Photo Credit: Cindy Adachi)