Saturday, February 11, 2012

Cougars Earn Weekend Split with Edmonton

The Prince George Cougars and Edmonton Oil Kings have split a weekend set in Prince George. Saturday at CN Centre, the Edmonton Oil Kings skated to a 5-0 victory over Prince George. Rhett Rachinski scored three times for Edmonton and Laurent Brossoit stopped 24 pucks for the shutout.

Edmonton opened the scoring at the 2:56 mark of the first period. Rhett Rachinski received a pass in the slot area and was able to put it past Drew Owsley for his 20th of the season.

After the first goal the Cougars seemed to gain some momentum back. Campbell Elynuik was stopped on a breakaway by Laurent Brossoit and the Cougars were denied on some other close opportunities.

Edmonton extended their lead to 2-0 when Rhett Rachinski converted on a two-on-one pass from Klarc Wilson. The Oil Kings outshot Prince George 13-9 after one period. The Oil Kings went zero-for-two on the power play in the first.

The score stayed 2-0 until the end of the second, when Henrik Samuelsson converted off a Keegan Lowe pass for his fifth of the season.

Early in the third the Oil Kings made it 4-0 when Kristians Pelss stole the puck from behind the Cougars goal and snuck it past Drew Owsley for his 19th of the campaign.

The final goal came in the final minute of play when Rhett Racinski found himself in alone on Drew Owsley, and beat the Cougars netminder with a spin-o-rama for his third of the night and 22nd of the season.

The Cougars were outshot 43-24 by Edmonton and finished zero-for-three on the power play. Edmonton finished the night zero-for-four.

In the end though, the Cougars can take several positives from the weekend. They managed to split with the Oil Kings, and were able to gain some ground on both Seattle and Victoria in the race for the final two playoff spots in the Western Conference.

The Cougars are now four points back of both Victoria and Seattle with two games in hand on the Royals and one in hand on Seattle.

Next up: The Red Deer Rebels on Wednesday night at CN Centre. Game time is 7:00.

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