Rookie's first goal snaps three-game Oilers skid
BY JOHN RITTENOURE World Correspondent
Thursday, November 08, 2012
11/08/12 at 5:38 AM
Rookie Matt Gingera came through when the Tulsa Oilers needed it most, providing just enough offense for a 2-1 Central Hockey League victory over the Rapid City Rush on Wednesday at the BOK Center.
Gingera, who came to the Oilers after six games with Chicago Express of the ECHL and four years with Sacred Heart University, connected with his first professional goal at 13:15 of the third period to give the Oilers the lead. David Beauregard fired in an empty-net goal as the buzzer sounded, but the goal was not allowed.
It didn't matter. The win was in the bag, and the Oilers broke a three-game losing streak.
"I was just coming off the bench, and Bobo (Michel Beausoleil) and Gary (Steffes) were working it down low and they found me," said Gingera. "I had an opportunity a couple of games ago and missed the net.
"I was just standing square with the net. I went high blocker. I was just trying to get it off as fast as I could before the goalie could get set ."
The goal came despite the Oilers only putting up four shots for the period.
"It wasn't a pretty win, but when you get two points you get two points, Oilers coach Bruce Ramsay said.
"He (Gingera) did not get to play a lot, but when he got his opportunity he took advantage of it.
"It was great to see our goaltending (rookie Dan Bakala) come in and make the big stops when we needed them."
In the opening period, the Oilers showed more offense and Ben Gordon put Tulsa ahead with a rebound shot off the wall for his sixth goal of the season. Ryan Menei assisted along with former Oilers leading scorer Mike Ullrich, in an Tulsa uniform for the first time this season.
But the Oilers struggled over the final two periods.
"We had a great first period but we toned it down after that," Ramsay said. "We struggled on the power play in the second period and had too many turnovers."
Game notes: Veteran Tyler Fleck came off 7-day injured reserve and was in the Oilers lineup Wednesday. Mike Ullrich, who was tied with Dylan Crake for the Oilers points lead last season, has returned to play for the Oilers. Newcomer Ryan Green was waived.
The Oilers will play three games in the next four days. Tulsa travels to Fort Worth to play the Brahmas on Friday and Saturday then returns to the BOK Center to host the Missouri Mavericks at 4:05 p.m. Sunday.
TULSA 2, RAPID CITY 1
First Period: 1, Tulsa, Ben Gordon, 6 (Menei, Ullrich) 8:57. Penalties: Tulsa, Steffes (tripping) 9:29. Rapid City, Wray (slashing) 14:03.
Second Period: 2, Rapid City, Konkle, 4 (unassisted) 5:46 (sh). Penalties: Rapid City, Surma (hooking) 5:01. Rapid City, Knoll (hooking) 13:17. Rapid City, Behler (roughing) 15:39. Rapid City, Behler (tripping) 18:10.
Third Period: 3, Tulsa, Gingera, 1 (Beausoleil, Steffes) 13:15. Penalties: Tulsa, Maraini (interference) 18:00.
Power Plays: Rapid City, 0-2. Tulsa, 0-5.
Shots: Rapid City, 3-11-14 - 28. Tulsa, 9-6-4 - 19.
Saves: Rapid City, Boron 8-6-3 - 17. Tulsa, Bakala 3-10-14 - 27.
Referee: Kevin Curtis. A: 3,411.
Original Print Headline: Rookie's first goal snaps Oilers' skid
Tulsa Oilers forward Matt Gingera races for the puck against the Rapid City Rush during their game at the BOK Center on Wednesday. The rookie scored his first pro goal in the third period. KEVIN PYLE / for The Tulsa World