BROOKS, AB (April 5, 2019) – The Okotoks Oilers scored twice in the span of 1:58 in the third period, erasing a 2-1 Brooks Bandits lead and taking their second straight win at the Centennial Regional Arena, with a 3-2 victory cutting Brooks’ series lead in the AJHL South Final to 3-2 and forcing a sixth game on Sunday night in Okotoks.
The game was played in front of a season-high crowd of 1,870 in Brooks.
Gibb Coady opened the scoring for Okotoks at the 18:01 mark of the first when he won a net front battle and flipped a close range shot past Pierce Charleson (Aurora, ON) to give the Oilers a 1-0 lead after a first in which the shots were tied 11-11.
But Brooks took control in the second, outshooting the Oilers 10-6 and scoring twice. First, Simon Gravel (Boucherville, QC) sped in on a breakaway and tucked a one-handed poke check shot past Brady Parker to knot the game at 1-1. Only 1:09 later, with Brooks on a power play, Ryan Mahshie (Stoney Creek, ON) tipped home a point shot by Luke Bast (Red Deer, AB) to give the Bandits their first lead of the night.
But Okotoks again saved its best for last, outshooting the Bandits 13-6 in the third for a game total of 30-27. Austin Wong fired home a turnaround shot from the slot at 14:06, before an attempted clear by Brooks came straight to Spencer McHardy of the Oilers at the right circle, who fired a high shot through a crowd and into the Oiler net for the eventually game-winner.
Despite a furious scramble in front of the Oiler net in the final seconds, the Bandits couldn’t equalize, and will now face a Game 6 on Sunday night at Pason Centennial Arena that will represent their second chance of the season to advance to the AJHL Final. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:00 PM with pre-game coverage starting at 6:45 on Real Country 105.7.
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