For the third time this season the Bonnyville Pontiacs got the better of the Fort McMurray Oil Barons. The Pontiacs (21-7-3) came away with a 5-3 win over the MOB (21-6-1) Wednesday night at the Casman Centre.
With the loss the Oil Barons fell to third in the North Division with 43 points. Two behind Bonnyville and three behind Whitecourt. The MOB however have three and four games in hand respectively on the two teams who sit above them in the standings.
The Pontiacs struck first, 5:02 into the first period when Trygve Many Guns fed the puck out front to Isaac Saniga who snapped a shot over the glove of Eric Szudor.
The MOB would get some life just past the mid-way point of the frame when Brett Edwards fired home his seventh of the year. Shane Fraser won the face-off to Edwards who walked into the slot and beat Robert Jacobson low on the glove side.
The Pontiacs would regain their lead early in the second period. Mitchell Oliver snuck a shot through the legs of Szudor to make it 2-1.
At 6:39 while on a powerplay, the MOB would tie the game when JC Thivierge blasted a shot past Jacobson for his seventh of the year. The goal snapped a 13 game goalless drought for the defenceman.
The goals went from bad to worse two minutes later. A weak dump in from Ryan Symington deflected off the glove of Szudor and trickled into the gapping net to again put the Pontiacs up by one.
Bonnyville would double their lead on a powerplay at 17:01 as Brandon Whistle finished off a tic-tac-toe passing play from Derek Brown and Alden Dupuis.
The MOB however would respond quickly. Just 36 seconds after the goal, Ryan Cox deflected in a Thivierge shot to cut the lead to 4-3 heading into the intermission.
The Oil Barons pressed for an equalizer in the third and had several good chances. Matteo Aiello and Edwards were each robbed by Jacobson in a matter of seconds mid-way through the frame. Brandon Whistle would seal the win for the visitors with an empty net goal as the Pontaics have now taken seven of a possible eight points against Barons so far this season.
The MOB will host the Spruce Grove Saints Friday and Saturday at the Casman Centre before heading out on the road for the rest of December.
The Barons are also gearing up to take on the Czech Republic World Junior A Challenge select team in a pre-tournament game Friday, December 9th at the Casman Centre. Tickets for all remaining home games can be purchased at the box office or online.
Written by: Taylor Pope, mymcmurray.com.
Photographer: Dan Lines