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Pats lose tournament opener

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St. Albert – August 28, 2009

The Edmonton Oil Kings 3rd Annual Pre-season Invitational Tournament is underway at Servus Credit Union Place in St. Albert. The hosts were up against the Regina Pats Friday night. The Oil Kings failed to convert on four power plays in a tight checking first period. The team’s best chance came late in the period while a man up. Robin Soudek set up Clayton Cumiskey on the door step but he failed to convert. At the other end, Oil King goalie Cam Lanigan was solid stopping Graham Hood on a breakaway. Late in the frame he robbed Matt Strueby in close. The first period ends scoreless.

One of the Oil Kings young guns opened the scoring in the second. Keegan Lowe’s point shot found it’s way past Regina goalie Damien Ketlo to make it 1 – 0. The Oil Kings made it 2 – 0 on the power play after a wild goal mouth scramble. TJ Foster had a couple whacks at it before Michael St. Croix finally stuck it in.

“I thought Foster and St. Croix had some good chemistry tonight,” says Head Coach Steve Pleau. “Both guys are smart hockey players. They make good reads and move the puck around well.”

Regina started the third period with a brief two man advantage but the Oil Kings penalty kill held tight. Four minutes into the third, Lanigan robbed Hood again on a set up at the top of the crease. Midway through the period, the Pats had another power play chance. Tomas Hricina tipped a point shot but Lanigan was able to get a pad on it. Edmonton put it away on a power play goal by Garrett Thiessen and an even strength marker by Robin Soudek. The night belonged to Lanigan who back stopped the team to a 4 – 0 win. The Oil Kings tender made stops for the shut out.

“Lanigan was our best player tonight,” says Pleau. “He settled down after training camp and made some great saves.”

Lanigan credits the Oil Kings new Goaltender Coach, Lyle Mast, with his improved focus.

“We sat down and discussed going back to the basics,” says Lanigan. “He got me concentrating on the puck, not just to see it, but to stop it.”

The Oil Kings Invitational continues tomorrow, with three games on the schedule. The Regina Pats and Medicine Hat Tigers play at 11:00 am. The Red Deer Rebels play their only tournament game at 3:00 pm against the Moose Jaw Warriors. The Edmonton Oil Kings return to the ice at 7:00 pm against the Swift Current Broncos. The tournament continues Sunday with Regina and Swift Current playing at 3:00 pm. The weekend concludes when the Oil Kings face Medicine Hat at 7:00 pm.

Game 2 – Edmonton Oil Kings 4 Regina Pats 0

First Period
No scoring
Shots on Goal: ED 10 / RP 6

Second Period
1. EOK - Lowe (Foster, St. Croix) ES, 3:11
2. EOK – St. Croix (Foster, Stephenson) PP, 6:03
After 2 Periods: ED 22/ RP 16

Third Period
3. EOK – Thiessen (Wruck, Rachinski) PP, 13:36
4. EOK – Soudek (Thiessen, Wruck) ES, 16:33
After 3 Periods: ED 32/ RP 25
EOK – Lanigan 32/ 32
RP – Kelto 16 /18, Tendler 12/ 14

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