Oklahoma City Blazers Hockey

Blazers Earn Share Of First Place, Defeat Express 5-2

The Oklahoma City Blazers were back in action Saturday night against the Springfield Express, looking to move into a tie for first place in the Midwest Division standings. Coming into the game, the Blazers sat in second place, two points behind the division-leading El Paso Rhinos. With El Paso idle this weekend, the Blazers had the chance to earn a share of first place with a win over Springfield.

As was the case the night before, head coach Tyler Fleck went with Drennen Atherton in net, while Springfield went with goaltender Bailey Stephens.

The first period saw a lot of chances come the way of Oklahoma City, but Stephens stood all in net until the Blazers finally broke through at 18:40 of the period. Kirill Romanov opened the scoring on a power play and gave OKC the 1-0 lead after one period. After twenty minutes, the Blazers led in shots, 21-10.

Springfield scored for the first time this weekend to start off period number two, and would score once more in the third period. Oklahoma City received goals from David Peska, Vitali Mikhailov, Joel Leckstrom, and Ross Bartlett to seal the win for the Blazers. Ivan Bondarenko picked up a pair of assists in the game as well.

The Blazers power play unit went 2-for-3 with the man-advantage, while the penalty kill denied the Express on both chances.

Drennen Atherton made 30 saves in the win as he improved to 15-3-0 this season. Bailey Stephens fell to 12-8-1 with the loss, making 35 saves.

The weekend series concludes on Sunday, January 15th at 2pm Central. Catch all of the action on WSHL Live and at Falcone’s Pizza in Moore.

Scoring by Period

1st Period
OKC (18:40) Kirill Romanov, assisted by Ivan Bondarenko, Drake Johnson – PP Goal

2nd Period
SPR (7:08) Scott Bagby, assisted by Nikita Salnikov, Nikita Sokov
OKC (12:00) David Peska, assisted by Tomas Rubes
OKC (19:25) Vitali Mikhailov, assisted by Ivan Bondarenko – PP Goal

3rd Period
SPR (4:34) Hunter Lovdokken, assisted by Jack Nevicosi, Gael Lubwele
OKC (12:10) Joel Leckstrom, assisted by Vitali Mikhailov, Pavel Oxiouta
OKC (19:22) Ross Bartlett – Shorthanded Goal, Empty Net