Edmonton, AB – The Edmonton Oil Kings drew first blood with a 3-2 win over the visiting Portland Winterhawks in Game 1 of the WHL Championship Series presented by Kal Tire and Husky. The Oil Kings were led by a strong defensive performance from Captain Mark Pysyk and two point nights from 20 year old veterans Jordan Peddle and Rhett Rachinski.
It only took 85 seconds for the Oil Kings to open the scoring as Rachinski tipped a shot from Pysyk for his fourth of the WHL Playoffs. Edmonton played solid defensive hockey against the potent Winterhawks attack and gave up just six shots in the period. The also killed off a Portland 5 on 3 power play to preserve a 1 – 0 lead heading into the first intermission.
The Oil Kings kept the edge in the middle period with goals from Oilers draft pick Martin Gernat and 20 year old Jordan Peddle. Peddle’s eventual game-winner was a booming slapshot streaking down the left wing for a shorthanded goal to give Edmonton a 3 – 0 lead. Portland replied with two quick goals from Marcel Noebels and Sven Bartschi just under two minutes apart to make it a one-goal game with just 20 minutes to go.
Eastern Conference Championship MVP Laurent Brossoit posted 24 saves to frustrate the Hawks all night. Edmonton’s power play was 0 for 5 on the evening while the penalty kill held the Hawks to 1 for 3 with the advantage.
Game 2 of the WHL Championship presented by Kal Tire and Husky is set for Friday, May 4th at Rexall Place. This game promises to be one of the biggest crowds of the 2012 post season with ticket sales already in excess of 8,000. Game time is set for 7:00 p.m. Tickets for the WHL Championship series are on sale now and available at oilkings.ca, at the Oil Kings Ticket Office at TELUS Field (10233-96 Avenue) or at the door. The 2012 Oil Kings Playoffs are presented by ATB Financial.
Now is the best time to become an Oil Kings Season Seat Holder for 2012-13. Secure your seat for next year with a $100 deposit per seat and receive tickets for the first round of the 2013 WHL Playoffs for FREE. For season tickets, contact the Oil Kings Ticket Office at (780) 414-GOAL (4625).
WHL CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES SCHEDULE (All Times MDT)
Edmonton leads series 1-0
Thursday, May 3 – Portland (2) at Edmonton (3)
Friday, May 4 – Portland at Edmonton – 7:00 p.m. MDT @ Rexall Place
Sunday, May 6 – Edmonton at Portland – 7:00 p.m. MDT @ Rose Garden
Tuesday, May 8 – Edmonton at Portland – 8:00 p.m. MDT @ Rose Garden
*Thursday, May 10 – Portland at Edmonton – 7:00 p.m. MDT @ Rexall Place
*Saturday, May 12 – Edmonton at Portland – 7:00 p.m. MDT @ Rose Garden
*Sunday, May 13 – Portland at Edmonton – 6:00 p.m. MDT @ Rexall Place