Oilers End Playoff Drought

Thursday, May 26th 2011, 12:19 pm
By: News On 6

Originally Published: Apr 9, 2011 11:6 PM CDT

Keith Leventhal
Oklahoma Sports Mobile Journalist

TULSA, Oklahoma – There’s been good news and bad news for the Tulsa Oilers in their first round playoff series against Mississippi.

The good news is the team has won 2 straight games to force a winner-take-all game 5. The bad news is the Oilers are 0-2 at home in this series.

The decisive game 5 was on Saturday night at the BOK Center. And it was Tulsa that got off to a fast start.

The Oilers scored a pair of goals in the first period to take an early lead. Jack Combs started off the scoring with an unassisted goal 6 minutes into the game. Then late in the 1st, Chad Costello stuck a big slap shot into the net to make it 2-0 after 20 minutes.

The 2nd period was a little quieter, but the Oilers managed to add to their lead. Costello scored his 2nd goal of the night late in the 2nd and, with just one period left in the series, Tulsa was up 3-0.

However, everything started to turn around early in the 3rd. Darrell Stoddard scored less than 3 minutes into the final period to cut the Tulsa lead to 3-1. Then, just 61 seconds later, Matt Summers also put one into the net. And all of the sudden, Tulsa’s big lead had been cut to 3-2 with 16 minutes left in the 3rd period.

Fortunately, that’s when the Oilers snapped out of their funk and got going once again. Just 3 minutes after Mississippi had cut the lead to one, Braden Walls managed to sneak one by RiverKings goalie Alexander Pechurskiy to stretch Tulsa’s lead to 4-2. Then, 36 seconds later, Jack Combs scored his 2nd goal of the night off of a pretty assist from Costello. And that capped off a fantastic game for the Oiles as they beat the RiverKings 5-2.

With the win, Tulsa wins the series 3 games to 2. That’s the first playoff series win for the Oilers since 1994 and it puts the team into the Berry Conference semifinals. They’ll play Bossier-Shreveport in that round. Games 1 and 2 will be in Bossier City on Friday, April 15, and Saturday, April 16. The series then moves to Tulsa for games 3 and 4. Game 3 will be on Tuesday, April 19. If it’s needed, game 4 would be at the BOK Center on Friday, April 22. And if it goes all the way to a decisive game 5, that would be in Bossier City on Saturday, April 23.