Lethbridge, AB – The Lethbridge Hurricanes returned to the ENMAX Centre on Friday night as they welcomed the Edmonton Oil Kings for the first of three meetings in the next eight days and the Hurricanes picked up a wild 7-4 victory.
Not only did the Hurricanes play, and beat, the Oil Kings. But after the game the teams announced that they had made a trade as the Hurricanes acquired defenseman Kyle Yewchuk from the OK’s in exchange for a fifth round draft pick. Yewchuk was a healthy scratch in the game for Edmonton.
The Hurricanes jumped out to an early lead 1:45 into the game as Ryan Bowen scooped a puck down the ice and Egor Babenko skated onto, shrugged off a check, and ripped home a puck over the blocker side of Oil Kings’ goaltender Patrick Dea for his 12th of the season to make it 1-0 Lethbridge. It didn’t take long, however, for Edmonton to equalize as Davis Koch tapped home his 11th of the season on a power play with Jadon Joseph in the penalty box at the 3:11 mark. The Oil Kings outshot the Hurricanes 8-6 in the first period.
It was a wild second period that saw the teams combine for a total of seven goals. The ‘Canes jumped out to a 2-1 lead as Brett Davis potted his seventh of the season on the power play just 1:51 into the game. The Oil Kings then scored three unanswered to forge ahead 4-2 as Graham Millar scored in his Edmonton debut to tie the game before Anatolli Elizarov potted his sixth to put them up 3-2. They made it a two goal lead as Tyler Robertson redirected a point shot past Ryan Gilchrist; Gilchrist was then lifted from the game after allowing four goals on 14 shots. Stuart Skinner came in and stopped all 14 shots he faced in the game. After the goalie change, the ‘Canes scored three goals before the period was out. Jordy Bellerive, who had a fight in the first period and an assist on the Davis goal, completed the Gordie Howe hat-trick when he netted a shorthanded goal at the 12:11 mark. Just 39 seconds later, Babenko scored his second of the game to tie the game at 4-4. Tyler Wong scored his team-leading 26th of the year at the 17:51 mark to put the ‘Canes ahead 5-4 at the second intermission.
The Hurricanes added two more in the third period. Ryley Lindgren scored a power play goal at the 2:24 mark as he netted his 14th of the season finishing off a three-way passing play – Giorgio Estephan and Wong earned the helpers on the goal. Then at the 14:34 mark, Ryan Bowen banked home his ninth of the season to make it a 7-4 Hurricanes lead and that was how the game finished.
The Hurricanes outshot the Oil Kings 12-6 in the third period and 29-28 in the hockey game. The ‘Canes went 3/4 on the power play while the OK’s went 1/3 with the extra man.
Three stars of the game were:
1) ‘Canes – #22 Egor Babenko – 2 goals, 3 assists
2) ‘Canes – #15 Jordy Bellerive – 1 goal, 2 assists
3) Oil Kings – #34 Graham Millar – 1 goal, 1 assist
The Hurricanes snapped their two game losing streak with the victory. The win improved their record to 21-15-3-2 on the season.
The Hurricanes are back in action on Saturday night when they welcome the Red Deer Rebels at the ENMAX Centre at 7:00pm. Tickets are available online, by calling 403-329-SEAT (7328) or by visiting the ENMAX Centre or Yates Ticket Centre’s.