Oilers beat Blues 5-2 for fifth straight road win
|Edmonton's Jeff Deslauriers makes one of 27 saves in St. Louis Friday night. The Oilers went on to beat the Blues 5-3. (Photo by Mark Buckner/NHLI via Getty Images)
by Jen Sharpe | edmontonoilers.com
It was a tale of two games that had a happy ending for Oilers fans. After outshooting, out-playing, and out-scoring the Oilers 3-0 in the first half of the game, the Blues were faced with a team gunning for a franchise record.
Two goals by Gilbert Brule
got the club started on a five-goal comeback, an offensive onslaught that secured a 5-3 win for Edmonton and franchise record for most consecutive road wins on a single road trip.
The league's worst powerplay unit got an early chance to improve their stats when Jason Strudwick
was called for hooking, but the Oilers outlasted the two minutes and soon benefited from a powerplay of their own.
The visitors managed one shot on Ty Conklin during the man-advantage, but the former Oiler turned it away and then watched his fellow Blues assume a 7-2 shot lead by the period's midway point.
At that time, emotions bubbled over in the Oilers zone and coincidental roughing minors were assessed to Zack Stortini
and Brad Winchester. 1:26 into the infractions, David Backes capitalized on the open ice by wrapping the puck around the net and behind Jeff Deslauriers
to give the Blues a 1-0 lead.
With two minutes left in the frame, Patrik Berglund caught Shawn Horcoff
with his stick, resulting in a high-sticking double minor and period-closing powerplay for the Oil. The Blues' penalty killers were fierce, however, and crafted the best scoring opportunity of the stretch while playing shorthanded.
Edmonton regained control of the play and settled in around Conklin, but the buzzer interrupted the powerplay and sent the Oilers into the second period with a one-goal deficit.
The Oilers were unable to capitalize on the rest of the powerplay, and then suffered a fourth scoreless man-advantage immediately after.
While the visitors lacked powerplay production, the home team had no such problems. At 6:41, Ryan Stone
took an elbowing minor, and at 7:55, T.J. Oshie slapped the puck past Deslauriers to double St. Louis' lead.
Faced with a two-goal deficit, Edmonton's frustrations surfaced in the form of dropped gloves. On the following center ice face-off, Jean-Francois Jacques
and B.J. Crombeen thrilled fans with a marathon fight that resulted in twisted jerseys, bruised knuckles, and fighting majors to both players.
The Oilers were invigorated by the fight and peppered Conklin with the puck, but the club was unable to shake their goose-egg.
In the final five minutes, things got worse for Edmonton and then got a whole lot better. Shortly after a chaotic crease and soaring puck resulted in St. Louis' third unanswered goal of the game, Sheldon Souray
's actions against Winchester and then the referees resulted in a roughing minor, 10-minute misconduct and game-misconduct for the Oilers defenceman.
But Gilbert Brule
's keen eye for rebounds in the period's dying seconds negated David Backes' goal and gave the Oilers a much-needed lift heading to the third period.
Edmonton maintained its shot lead through the early part of the third, and eight minutes in, Brule ignited his club with his second goal of the game. From the mid slot, the young forward received a feed from linemate Sam Gagner
and surprised the goalie with a quick snapper to get the Oilers back within one.
The goal opened the flood gates. Less than three minutes later, Gagner got in on the action, deflecting the puck past Conklin to tie the game at three.
And less than three minutes after that, Shawn Horcoff
added a goal of his own, marking Edmonton's fourth unanswered goal and first lead of the game.
Finally, Penner potted his 18th of the season, sealing a five-goal comeback and fifth consecutive road win for the Oilers.
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