The Calgary Flames finished off the 2011 Young Stars Tournament in Penticton with a 4-3 win over the Edmonton Oilers on Wednesday night. Sven Baertschi paced the team with a pair of goals, as his line with Max Reinhart and Patrick Holland was dominant for another night. Joni Ortio earned the win in net as the Flames prospects return home to Calgary for the start of main camp on Saturday.
The first period was all Calgary as Baertschi and tryout player Dustin Sylvester each scored before Edmonton made things close with a goal in the middle frame. The third period was a little more wide open, but it was Lance Bouma’s first of the tournament that ended up as the winner; it came off an Oilers giveaway, and Bouma did what he does best: crash the net.
1. Calgary. Sven Baertschi (Patrick Holland, Max Reinhart) 7:34 (pp)
2. Calgary. Dustin Sylvester (Greg Nemisz) 14:21
3. Edmonton. Tyler Pitlick (Curtis Hamilton, Antti Tyrvainen) 8:23
4. Calgary. Sven Baertschi 2 (James Martin) 6:06 (pp)
5. Edmonton. Anton Lander (Tobias Rieder) 10:20
6. Calgary. Lance Bouma (Roman Horak) 10:44
7. Edmonton. Martin Marincin 11:39
Baertschi is dangerous, there’s no question about that. He’s got great breakaway speed, he’s dangerous around the net, and he knows where to put himself. Playing with two smart players like Reinhart and Holland, and there’s going to be things created. What I liked about that line especially was how many defensive starts they had, and how many of those same shifts ended in offensive zone whistles. If they tracked Corsi, their’s would have been astronomically high tonight.
Strongest game of the tournament for Joni Ortio, as he made 21 saves en route to his first victory of the tournament. He was confident and was much more keen in challenging shooters, which is something he wasn’t doing earlier. Ortio made a couple nice blocker stops, a nice glove save and a huge pad save in the dying seconds to preserve the win.
Still a couple rough performances, as no one stood out all that much positively on the blueline. T.J. Brodie didn’t have a bad tournament, but he certainly didn’t have the standout performance he had a year before while John Negrin really fought the puck on Wednesday night. I really liked James Martin, one of Calgary’s tryout players, and I think he at the very least warrants a look from another team.
One Good Reason…
…why the Flames won? They were better than the Edmonton Oilers. Let’s face it, the Flames prospects should have won this game and they did. Calgary dressed their ‘A’ group of players, while Edmonton was without a couple of notable blueliners along with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins up front. Calgary was better for the majority of this game, and that’s why they come away with the victory.
It’s gotta be Sven. He was very good, and in three games, all three members of that line have earned this prestigous honor. Baertschi’s first goal was impressive, as his initial rocket of a one-timer was stopped very nicely by starting goaltender Adam Brown; but instead of peeling away, he stuck with it and scored on his backhand rebound shot. The second goal was great net front prescence, as Baertschi tipped in a Martin point shot. Good stuff all round.
Sum It Up
A fairly informative tournament all in all for the Flames, as the team needs to evaluate a few things heading into the start of main camp. Will guys like Reinhart, Holland, and Baertschi end up getting a chance to show their stuff at camp? Or will they go back to start the season in the Western Hockey League? Ortio showed a good ability to catch onto things quickly, but there’s no doubting he has work to do this season adjusting to the North American game. And will anyone from this tournament impress Flames brass enough in main camp to maybe warrant some extra sticking time; my guess would be no at this point, but who knows? And that’s the fun of this particular camp starting on Saturday.