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PEORIA’S LATE RALLY DROPS BARONS IN OVERTIME
By Cassie Gage,
OKLAHOMA CITY – After leading early, the Oklahoma City Barons were unable to come up with the win, falling 5-4 in overtime to the Peoria Rivermen Saturday evening at the Cox Convention Center. Oklahoma City (18-15-2-4) faced its fifth overtime session of the season and lost in that extra frame for just the second time. The Rivermen (25-10-2-1) took the second point awarded on the night and won their second straight against the Barons.
Oklahoma City scored the game’s opening goal at the 2:21 mark of the first period. Ben Ondrus connected on a spin-around pass from Colin McDonald to give the home team a 1-0 advantage while on the penalty kill. The Rivermen answered seconds later on a goal from Mark Cundari, tying the game while still on the subsequent power play at 2:37.
Oklahoma City regained the lead at 3:19 when Alexandre Giroux scored on the power play. Taylor Chorney and Bryan Helmer were credited with the assists on the goal. Peoria added the equalizer late in the period at 19:08 on a goal from Nicholas Drazenovic as the teams headed into the first intermission tied 2-2.
The Barons capitalized on their second shot of the second period when Chris VandeVelde put the puck past Ben Bishop’s blocker side to give Oklahoma City a 3-2 lead at 3:31. Matt Marquardt was awarded an assist on the goal as was Andrew Lord.
Adam Cracknell added Peoria’s second power play goal of the night at 13:20 as the second period ended the way the first did – in a tie.
With a 3-3 tie heading into the final period of regulation, the third period proved to be a spirited affair. The Barons broke the tie at 4:35 when Giroux scored his second goal of the night on a 3-on-2. Helmer picked up his second assist of the night, while Brad Moran got on the board with his first point of the evening.
The Rivermen got the game-tying goal late in the period at 16:25 by Stefan Della Rovere to force overtime. Nathan Oystrick ended the game 16 seconds into the extra period as Peoria won 5-4.
Jeff Deslauriers played in his first game for the Barons since Dec. 20 after playing for Team Canada at the Spengler Cup post-Christmas. In his return, he turned away 29 shots. A trio of Barons including Giroux, VandeVelde and Teemu Hartikainen led Okahoma City with three shots on goal each.
Oklahoma City closes out its current five-games homestand tomorrow afternoon against Lake Erie at 5:05 p.m. CT. Sunday afternoon is the final opportunity for fans to skate with select members of the team following the game.
Head coach Todd Nelson and Barons' forward Colin McDonald react to 5-4 OT loss to Peoria.
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