By Robert Murray, Fort McMurray Today
The Fort McMurray Oil Barons gave the Lloydminster Bobcats a taste of their own medicine Monday night at the Centennial Civic Centre Arena in Lloydminster, downing them by a score of 4-1.
“I liked the effort a lot,” said MOB head coach Gord Thibodeau. “Very committed effort. Twenty guys going hard and probably the best game we’ve played in a long time.”
Alex Cromwell scored his second goal of the series roughly 13 minutes into the first period to give the Oil Barons an early first period lead, followed shortly after by Austin McDonald’s fifth of the playoffs, which tied the game up at one heading into the first intermission.
Brennan Saulnier made up for a late first-period roughing penalty, breaking out of the box early in the second and outwaiting Christopher Tai to give the Oil Barons a lead they would not relinquish.
Following Saulnier’s early second period goal, the Oil Barons and Bobcats battled physically for the remainder of the period with the MOB taking a 2-1 lead into the second intermission.
Mitchell Vanderlaan and Curtis Lewington added third period goals to cement the victory. The Oil Barons outshot the Bobcats 37-24 in the game. Thibodeau added after the game that with a pivotal game four coming up on Tuesday night, his team needed to bring the same effort in order to take a stranglehold on the series.
“You’ve proven you can play one great game but you’ve got to back it up, especially back-to-back games,” said Thibodeau. “Rough building, a tough team. You’ve got to find a way. Tomorrow’s a key game in the series and we want to make sure we swing that momentum back our way.”
Game four is scheduled for puck drop at 7:30 p.m. in Lloydminster with the Oil Barons leading the best-of-seven series two games to one.
Photo credit: Robert Murray/Fort McMurray Today