Oil Barons Recap Vs. Bulldogs

The Oil Barons earned an important two points in the standings, defeating the Blackfalds Bulldogs 2-1 to snap their four game losing streak. Carter Schmidt had a goal and a helper in the win, while Gabe Gratton stopped 26 of the 27 shots on goal he faced.

Fort McMurray jumped out to an early lead in the first period. After Jason Huang jarred the puck free, Liam Rodman picked out Schmidt in the neutral zone, where the West Kelowna product sped down the right wing before firing the puck over the glove of Wilson Maxfield. The goal was Schmidt’s fifth of the season. Blackfalds had several opportunities to equalize the game, however, Gratton was excellent in goal making two standout saves in the opening frame. The first was a deflection in tight from Brendan Ross, the second was off a turnover in the slot, where Gratton got the end of his glove on the Otto Hanson wrist shot. The Bulldogs had another sequence of extreme pressure at the start of the second period, but they couldn’t solve Gratton, who made another nine saves in the middle frame. Then the Oil Barons found some insurance. On the power-play, Schmidt tried a cross ice feed which was broken up by the Bulldogs. However, the bouncing puck went right to Rylan Ringor in the slot, where the pride of Winnipeg snapped home his fifth goal of the season. Fort McMurray almost made it 3-0, only to see Maxfield make a couple of brillant stops on Simon Gaul, denying the Quebec native his team leading 12th goal of the season. Gratton answered with another stellar stop of his own in the third period. Just as an Oil Barons’ power-play expired, Blackfalds stormed into Fort McMurray’s end, where Jayden Joly was one on one with Gratton. The Fort McMurray netminder stretched out with his right pad to stone the Bulldog forward, preserving the 2-0 lead. Blackfalds eventually broke the goose egg late in the contest. David Brandes unleashed a shot from the right point, where it was deflected home by Brendan Ross for his 20th goal of the year, making it 2-1 with 4:07 to go in the game. Blackfalds pressed for a game tying goal, which included an offensive zone face-off with 4.7 seconds remaining in the game. However, Fort McMurray blocked a last ditch effort from Carter Patterson and the Oil Barons held on for their eighth win of the season.

The MOB will be back in action on Friday and Saturday nights when they welcome the Grande Prairie Storm for the teams’ first two meetings of the year. Friday is also the annual Teddy Bear Toss game presented by Fort McMurray Infinity Cleaners. Both games will start at 7:30pm.

Game Tickets: https://tickets.fortmcmurrayoilbarons.ca/