The Fort McMurray Oil Barons suffered their first loss of 2014 Thursday night in Whitecourt as the Wolverines defeated the MOB 7-2.
“We didn't play very good defence and we didn't communicate very well,” said Oil Barons head coach and general manager Gord Thibodeau. “We just weren't sharp. We didn't hit the net on our chances and we gave them far too many quality chances and they took advantage of them. Credit to them, but it was just a flat effort from us. We didn't have a lot going on from defence right on up to the forwards.”
The game was fairly even after the first period, with Colten Mayor scoring the lone goal for the Wolverines at 13:14. Shots were 12-11 for Whitecourt after 20 minutes of play.
The Wolverines completely took over the game in the second period, scoring four goals to give the home team a 5-1 lead heading into the third. Brett McNeil scored the lone marker for the MOB in the second, with his shot getting deflected past Wolverines goaltender Mac Engel.
Whitecourt had just two shots in the third, but both managed to go in, including a shorthanded goal from Joel Hebert. Mitch Vanderlaan had the only goal for the Barons in the third and Whitecourt became the first team this season to score seven goals against the Barons. Thibodeau said his team had too much individual effort and not enough communication in their game against the Wolverines.
“We've got to be smarter, we've got to play as a group and we've got to communicate better to help out our defence,” said Thibodeau. “It was five guys on the ice playing individually tonight and it's very hard to win that way.”
Following Thursday's loss the Barons' record is now 36-6-3. The MOB will be right back at it Friday as they take on the league-leading Spruce Grove Saints at 7 p.m. in Spruce Grove.