Photo by Steven Christy
Two games. Two different outcomes. Still the wobbly Barons that we’ve seen for the better part of two weeks. Abbotsford, and their youthful core, gave the Barons a run for their money twice this weekend. OKC was able to overcome the odds in one game, but lose the other in the closing minutes of regulation (and a SO).
In game one, the Barons scored twice in both the first and second periods. Along the way the power play went 2/3 while the kill was absolutely perfect. Omark was responsible for two goals, and assisted on the other two. After Derek Nesbitt and Anton Lander added the final two goals of the game for OKC in the first five minutes of the second period, from that point forward it was all Abbotsford Heat. They’d run hot, scoring three straight goals, one on the power play, and giving Barons goaltender Richard Bachman 22 shots in the final period. Bachman played well, considering, but it was pretty clear that he was getting no help. However, the cushion was so large for OKC, that Abbotsford was unable to complete the comeback, and the Barons win 4-3
Game two was vastly different, and perhaps a bit more defensively strong. The Barons came out limp, shooting the puck only five times in the first period, but again it was Richard Bachman that played well enough to keep his team above water. A very late second period goal by Joel Broda gave the Barons the lead to start the third period. Just when it appeared that OKC was going to hang on for the victory, Abbotsford scored with the goalie pull with :39 remaining in the game. Abbotsford would win in a shootout, the Barons would lose a winnable game, and they would have to deal with the fact that there are some pretty major issues with the club.
Friday the Barons went 2/3 on the power play, things looked good. Saturday night, they went 0/6. The predictable nature of how this power play is running is pretty glaring. It’s going to be a problem from this point forward.
The Barons get a few days off, and then play three games in a span of four days including a Wednesday tilt against the suddenly red hot, Texas Stars. The final two games of the weekend are against the San Antonio Rampage. All three games are on the road. The test begins.