It took a while to get the scoring started in front of a sellout crowd at the Sierra Providence Events Center on Friday night. When it finally happened early in the second period, it was the Tulsa Jr. Oilers who would get on the board first. Forward Ivan Bukshevannyy would score his 18th goal of the season early in the second on a breakaway against goaltender Ryan Buttazzoni. It would be the last goal of the game for the Jr. Oilers as Buttazzoni would save a total of 10 shots in the game and the Rhinos would come away with a 7-1 victory.
After a tremendous first period where he saved 26 shots, Tulsa goaltender Teke Murphy was not so lucky following his team’s lone goal. A minute and a half after the Oilers got on the board, the Rhinos followed suit. Forward Lukas Znosko scored on a beautiful wraparound with an assist to forward Vojtech Zemlicka. Murphy would continue to stop almost all of the Rhinos shots near the crease. Once the Rhinos began to shoot from distance and through traffic, the floodgates began to open. At the 7:04 mark, defenseman David Brancik would score on a top shelf slap shot on the power play. Defenseman Clinton Hildebrand would continue the long distance scoring with a top shelf goal through traffic six minutes later.
At the 14:19 mark of the second period, the Rhinos’ two leaders in points would hook up as forward Jiri Pestuka would score with an assist from forward Sebastian Borg. Two minutes later, the night’s top star would score again as Znosko tallied top shelf off of a nice assist from new Rhino forward Jeremy Gillespie. As the third period began, it was still the shots from distance that troubled the Tulsa goaltender. Defenseman John Bowen scored for the second game in a row with an absolute blast from the blue line, less than a minute into the period. Forward Martin Hanl would close out the scoring with a beautiful breakaway goal at 12:47 with an assist to Bowen and forward Jonah Pearson on the power play.
The Jr. Oilers and Rhinos will square off again Saturday night at the Sierra Providence Events Center at 7:30pm.