Photo by Steven Christy. Is that man scared?
The Oklahoma City Barons, clinging to a seven game win streak, returned home to face the sleeping giant called the Texas Stars. The eight game win streak that began around Thanksgiving and extended into the first week of December was a franchise record. It also saw the Barons take four straight in OT sandwiched by two regulation wins prior and three later. They were a team simply getting the job done. The current streak was eerily similar. Three OT victories in that seven game stretch. Again, this team knows how to finish. And on Tuesday night in Bricktown the team would do a complete 180, and look like mere mortals against their rival to the South, the Stars.
Things were on the up as Kellen Jones received a pass from brother Connor in the first six minutes of the game to give wings to the Barons once more. But Texas would grind the gears, and rattle off two goals before the first period would end. Laurent Brossoit, the golden goose at the moment, would allow those two goals in only eleven shots. No penalties in the first period for either club, and we would head towards another dominate period for the Stars.
In the second period Texas would pick up right where they left off. A two minute slash would give the Stars a power play early on in the second forty, but it would be their lively play at even strength that would again sting OKC. Hulak and Root scored back-to-back goals just over a minute apart to put the Barons in a three-goal hole halfway through the period. A spirited Travis Ewanyk vs. Mike Dalhuisen fight gave little encouragement to the Barons, whom continued to be a bit lazy with the puck. The second twenty minutes ended with the Stars on top, 4-1.
An early third period goal by Steve Pinizzotto felt like a spark, as did his constant yip-yappy ways, but Derek Hulak would score his second goal of the evening to thwart any type of comeback.
The Barons’ seven game win streak would come to an end, and Laurent Brossoit would be handed an ultra rare loss.
Tonight’s OKC Barons Lineup:
K. Jones-C. Jones-Ewanyk
Scratches: Kessy, Lain (injured), Hamilton, Moroz, Gernat (healthy)
The Barons pack it in and ship it out for a three-in-three trip to Adirondack, Rochester and Hamilton beginning January 9. This will be a huge test for the Barons, whom will find themselves in unfamiliar terriroty.