The Fort McMurray Oil Barons scored two goals in the third period to erase a two goal deficit but couldn’t find the winner as they fell 4-3 in a shootout to the Lloydminster Bobcats Saturday night.
The win was the first of the season for the Bobcats (1-3-0), leaving the Olds Grizzlys as the only winless team left in the AJHL.
A slow start for the MOB (3-0-1) saw them fall behind early when a shot hit a skate and went right to Tucker Scantlebury who had a wide open net to bury the game’s first goal 29 seconds into the game.
It wasn’t the start Oil Barons rookie goaltender Josh Dias wanted in his first game in the AJHL. Dias would eventually settle in and make several huge pad saves in the game and finished with 32 saves in his debut.
The Bobcats struck again at 17:37 of the first period when Rylan Nivon banged home a rebound in front of the MOB goal to give the Bobcats a 2-0 lead after one period.
The Barons would get a goal back mid-way through the middle frame when Peter Tomaras picked off a pass and walked in and roofed a shot past Cale Elder for his first goal of the season.
Hunter Lamb would make it a 3-1 game 5:47 into the third period when he finished off a nice feed from Austin Lamotte on a two-on-one.
The MOB didn’t let the goal deflate them and actually put together their best period of the game, outshooting the Bobcats 17-10 in the third period.
Reed Morison cut the Bobcats lead to one when he stripped a Lloydminster defenceman while shorthanded and from his knees tucked the puck in past Elder. Morison now has goals in four straight games for the MOB.
The MOB would get a powerplay with just over five minutes left in the third period and would make the Bobcats pay. Ryan Conroy’s point shot was stopped by Elder but the rebound was kicked right to Brendan Stafford who hammered in his second goal of the year to tie the game 3-3.
Overtime solved nothing but in the shootout, Austin Lamotte and Zach Kaiser scored for the Bobcats while Morison and Kole Gable were stopped.
The MOB will look to finish up their road trip with a strong effort Sunday afternoon in Bonnyville when they take on the Pontiacs. Pre-game show at 2:15 p.m. on Country 93.3 with Taylor Pope.
Written by: Taylor Pope, mymcmurray.com
Photo by: Dan Lines