Bandits comeback falls short in Game 4 as Oilers even series

(Photo by Chad Goddard)

OKOTOKS, AB (March 29, 2023) – The Okotoks Oilers built a 3-1 lead in the 1st period, and despite cutting the deficit to one goal, the Brooks Bandits suffered a 3-2 setback to the Okotoks Oilers in Game 4.

Okotoks tied the best-of-seven South Division Semi-Final 2-2. The Bandits had goals from Caelan Fitzpatrick and Heath Armstrong, while Ethan Barwick made 23 saves.

Game 5 of the series is Friday, March 31st at the Centennial Regional Arena in Brooks at 7:00 pm. Game 6 is Sunday, April 2nd in Okotoks at 7:00 pm.

Fitzpatrick (Moose Jaw, SK) opened the scoring like he did in Game 3, firing in a left circle powerplay shot setup by Brendan Poshak (Green Bay, WI) at 10:03 of the 1st period. However, Okotoks tied the game at 13:29, as Zeth Kindrachuk cleaned up a loose puck in the crease to make it 1-1. The Oilers made it 2-1 at 17:43, as Sam Huck banked a shot off Barwick moments after the St. Albert, AB product made a huge save on an Oilers one-timer. Then at 19:38, forward Ty Yoder capitalized on a Bandits turnover and scored to make it 3-1.

The 2nd period was scoreless, the Bandits killed off three straight penalties successfully.

Armstrong (Calgary, AB) cut the Oilers lead to 3-2 at 3:41 of the 3rd period, pouncing on a rebound off an Aiden Celebrini (North Vancouver, BC) shot for his first goal of the playoffs. But despite emptying the net for the extra attacker, Brooks couldn’t get the equalizer.

Final shots were 26-25 Okotoks.