BARONS WIN STREAK ENDS AT SIX WITH 5-4 SHOOTOUT LOSS TO MONSTERS
By George Darkow,
Stefan Elliott netted the decisive score for the Lake Erie Monsters, who ended the Oklahoma City Barons’ six-game winning streak with a 5-4 shootout win Saturday night at Cox Convention Center.
Oklahoma City’s Anton Lander tallied two goals and an assist, and Brad Hunt had a career-high four points in the loss that dropped the Barons to 22-22-1-6.
Following a scoreless first period that saw Oklahoma City kill off four Lake Erie power play opportunities, the Barons opened the scoring exactly 30 seconds into the second period when Lander’s shot from the right circle defected up and over the shoulder of Monsters goalie Sami Aittokallio.
Lake Erie tied the score at 2:18 of the second when, off a 2-on-1 rush, Trevor Cheek found Robin Soudek, who flipped the puck past Barons goalie Richard Bachman.
At 6:58 of the second, Lake Erie took a 2-1 lead when, after a series of shots by the Monsters, Andrew Agozzino sent a backdoor pass to Mark Olver, who slid the puck past a sprawling Bachman.
After a slashing call to the Monsters’ Colin Smith at 10:21 in the second put the Barons on the power play, Hunt rifled a slap shot from the point that evaded heavy traffic in front of the Erie net and glided past Aittokallio to even the score at two goals apiece at 11:28.
Lake Erie regained the lead early in the third period when Smith sent a steep-angled shot from the right corner that tipped off the stick of Garrett Meurs in front of the Barons net and bounced past Bachman at 4:40 for a 3-2 Monsters advantage.
After an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty to OKC’s Kale Kessy and a roughing call to Erie’s Matt Hunwick resulted in 4-on-4 play, the Monsters extended their lead to 4-2 when Brad Malone maneuvered around Barons defenseman Taylor Fedun and beat Bachman glove side at 12:17 of the third.
Oklahoma City narrowed its deficit moments later following a tripping call on Erie’s J.T. Wyman at 14:05 of the third period when Lander sent a shot toward the Monsters net that Roman Horak deflected past Aittokallio to pull the Barons within one at 14:27.
Just over a minute later, Lander tallied his third point of the night when he fired a shot from the point that tipped off an Erie defender’s stick and through the legs of Aittokallio, tying the score at 4-4.
Following a scoreless overtime period, Lake Erie registered the victory on Elliot’s score in the shootout.
The Barons’ next game is Friday, when they head to Grand Rapids for a two-game series against the Griffins before traveling to Toronto to face the Marlies on Sunday.
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