The second installment of the Battle of Alberta had much different ending than it did two weeks ago.
The Edmonton Oilers rallied in the third to pick up a tight 3-2 win over the Calgary Flames Saturday night at the Scotiabank Saddledome in Calgary.
With the win, the Oilers have swept a three game road trip and are now winners of four straight.
“We only see Calgary three times, they got one, so it was nice to get one,” said Zach Hyman.
The first period was scoreless with the Oilers failing to capitalize on two power play chances. Tyler Toffoli had a shorthanded breakaway for the Flames but was denied by Stuart Skinner.
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Mikael Backlund had two shorthanded breakaways on the same penalty kill early in the second. He scored on his first chance but was denied on his second try. The Oilers took the puck the other way with Hyman scoring when his pass went in off Flames defenceman Noah Hanifin. Brett Ritchie scored off a feed from Milan Lucic to put Calgary back in front. The Flames outshot the Oilers 21-12 in the second.
Halfway though the third, Connor McDavid got to a loose puck that had been rimmed around the boards in the Flames end. His quick shot caught Jacob Markstrom off guard and tied the game 2-2. Dylan Holloway earned an assist for his first career point.
“Just doing my part,” said the smiling Oilers captain, who now has nine goals and 18 points in nine games this season. “It’s a team effort in here. We’ve had lots of different guys step up and I’m part of that.”
The Oilers went ahead with 7:36 left. McDavid sent a pass in front to Hyman, who had the puck go in off his skate.
Skinner finished with 40 saves as the Oilers were outshot 42-26. The 23-year-old knew there wasn’t much room for error.
“3-2 win? That’s the way you want to win,” said Skinner. “The guys did a good job at keeping shots to the outside for the majority of the game.
The Oilers head coach had high praise for his young netminder, who is now 2-1-0 with a .955 save percentage on the year.
“I thought he was exactly what I expected him to be: confident,” said Jay Woodcroft. “I felt good about his ability to come in and help us win the game tonight. He’s one half of a really good goaltending tandem.”
The Oilers, 6-3, will host Nashville on Tuesday (630 CHED, Face-off Show at 5:30 p.m., game at 7 p.m.).
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