Monsters Prevail in Shootout in Oklahoma City

Robin Soudek

Scoresheet

Four goals over the final two periods, and two more tallies in the shootout helped the Lake Erie Monsters (21-24-0-4) earn a 5-4 shootout victory on the road over the Oklahoma City Barons (22-22-1-6) Saturday night at Cox Convention Center. Robin Soudek scored his first AHL goal in his first AHL game, while Mark Olver, Garrett Meurs and Brad Malone also scored for the Monsters. The victory halted a three-game losing skid for the Monsters, and snapped a six-game winning streak for the Barons.

As was the case on Friday, the Monsters and Barons battled to a scoreless first period on Saturday, with the Monsters out-shooting the Barons 15-8 in the opening frame. The Monsters shot advantage in the first period was aided by four power play chances, but the Barons were a perfect 4-4 on the penalty kill against the Monsters in the opening frame.

Anton Lander opened the scoring with Oklahoma City on a shot from the left circle that deflected past Monsters goalie Sami Aittokallio 30 seconds into the second period. The power play goal gave the Barons a 1-0 lead, before Robin Soudek’s first American Hockey League goal tied the game at 1-1 for the Monsters. Trevor Cheek streaked up the left side of the ice, and connected with Soudek in front, who redirected a puck past Barons goalie Richard Bachman to tie the game at 1-1.

Mark Olver converted from in front of the Barons net after a perfect Andrew Agozzino centering pass at 6:58 of the second period to give the Monsters their first lead of the game, 2-1. J.T. Wyman also assisted on Olver’s 12th goal of the season. The Barons, however, would tie the game at 2-2 before the period came to a close. At 11:28, with the Barons on a power play, Brad Hunt rifled a shot from the center of the Monsters blue line; his sixth goal of the season.

Garrett Meurs regained a one-goal lead for the Monsters at 4:40 of the third period when he redirected a Colin Smith pass from the right wing corner past Bachman, giving the Monsters a 3-2 advantage. The goal was the fifth of the season for Meurs, and was also assisted by Stefan Elliott. The Monsters took a 4-2 lead after a great individual effort from Brad Malone; Malone carried the puck through neutral ice, outmuscled a pair of defenders, and sent a shot top-shelf to beat Bachman, and give the Monsters their largest lead of the night at 12:17 of the third. Gabe Beaupre assisted on Malones sixth goal of the season.

The Barons stormed back, scoring two goals between the 14:27 and 16:24 marks of the third period. Roman Horak and Lander scored for the Barons to tie the game at 4-4 and force overtime.

After overtime failed to yield a winner, a shootout was needed. The Monsters outscored the Barons 2-1 in the shootout portion, with Smith and Elliott scoring for the Monsters.

Aittokallio is 10-11-1 this season for the Monsters; he stopped 38 of 42 shots. Bachman is 14-12-3 after stopping 33 of 37 Monsters shots.

The Monsters are back on the ice Friday at 7:30 p.m. when they host the Iowa Wild at Quicken Loans Arena.

NOTES: The Monsters split the season series with the Barons, going 2-2-0-0… The Monsters are now 8-13-0-3 on the road, and 5-7-0-0 against the West Division… Smith leads the Monsters with six shootout goals this season; he is 6-8 in shootouts… Elliott is 1-2 in shootouts… The Monsters were 0-4 on the power play and 1-4 on the penalty kill.

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