With a crowd of 6,439 at the BOK Center to view the Stanley Cup and watch the Tulsa Oilers open their 2019-20 season, the Oilers did not disappoint, defeating the Kansas City Mavericks 5-2 on Friday.
After playing a tight game in the first two periods and leading 3-2, the Oilers broke the game open in the third with goals by Ryan Tesink and Deven Sideroff, his second of the night, to put the game out of reach.
Oilers coach Rob Murray was happy with how the team came together despite the lack of preseason play.
“I liked it a lot,” Murray said of the play. “Anytime at the beginning of the season with only having one exhibition game and not having our whole team in the lineup, it’s tough.We have not played as a team.
“As the game went on, we got better and better. The third period was our best period. We dominated the period and limited their opportunities.”
Newcomer Sideroff picked up three points with two goals and an assist. Veteran Adam Pleskach had a goal and an assist, as did Tesink.
“Deven Sideroff was very good and Danny Moynihan was really good and Josh Wesley was strong on the backside and Jake Clifford was good,” Murray said. “I don’t think there was a weak link anywhere.”
Kansas City’s Darian Dziurzynski tied the game for the second time at 8:35 of the second period to even the score at 2-2.
Rookie Jake Clifford out of Arizona State put the Oilers up 3-2 with his first professional goal at 14:12. The officials reviewed the goal under the new ECHL video replay rule and it was upheld. Moments later, the Mavericks thought they had tied the game at 3-3, but that goal was waved off when the officials ruled a player was in the goal crease.
Just four minutes into the game, Sideroff shot the Oilers into a 1-0 lead. An NHL contracted player sent to Tulsa from San Diego of the AHL, Sideroff flipped a short shot past the glove side of Mavericks goalie Hayden Hawkey. Pleskach and Tesink assisted on the play.
Kansas City evened the score 1:16 later as Jack Walker scored on a wraparound.
The Mavericks found their shooting touch after that, outshooting the Oilers 17-8 for the period. However, Pleskach, playing in his 400th Oilers game, scored on an assist from Sideroff at 18:06 to put the Oilers up 2-1.
The Oilers return to the BOK Center at 7:05 p.m. Saturday to take on Allen.
OILERS 5, MAVERICKS 2
Kansas City 1 1 0 — 2
Tulsa 2 1 2 — 5
First Period: 1, Tulsa, Sideroff 1 (Pleskach, Tesink) 4:09. 2, Kansas City, Walker 1 (Dziurzynski, Fugele) 6:25. 3, Tulsa, Pleskach 1 (Sideroff) 18:06. Penalties: Tulsa, McKee (holding) 12:37.
Second Period: 4, Kansas City, Dziurzynski 1 (Galt, McKeman) 8:35. 5, Tulsa, Clifford 1 (McKee, Thomas) 14:12. Penalties: Kansas City, Hults (hooking) :53. Tulsa, Jackson (slashing) 1:52. Kansas City, Betzold (high sticking) 7:00. Tulsa, Williams (tripping) 7:15. Kansas City, Dziurzunski (roughing) 10:05. Tulsa, Pleskach (high sticking) 16:18. Kansas City, Hawkey (tripping) 19:51.
Third Period: 6, Tulsa, Tesink 1 (Kaunisto) 8:58. 7, Tulsa, Sideroff 2 (D. Moynihan, Pleskach) 16:11. Penalties: Kansas City, Betzoid (hooking) 4:36.
Power Plays: Kansas City 0-for-4; Tulsa 0-for-5.
Shots: Kansas City, 17-4-4—25; Tulsa, 8-14-12—34.
Saves: Kansas City, Hawkey 6-13-10—29; Tulsa, Williams 16-3-4—23.
Referee: Sean MacFarlane. A: 6,439.