Photo credit:David Moll/Calgary Wranglers
Recap: Calgary Wranglers start the Outlaw Era with a 3-1 win over Abbotsford
2 months ago
The Calgary Wranglers debuted their stunning Outlaw jerseys in their afternoon match-up against the Abbotsford Canucks on Saturday. Calgary had to be as sharp as their uniforms in this game as they were playing against a Pacific Division rival on their heels in the standings. The Wranglers defended their top spot and beat the Canucks 3-1.
The absence of Colton Poolman and Brett Sutter in their last game against the Ontario Reign on Wednesday did not end up being performance-based. The team released an injury update prior to their game against the Canucks and confirmed both Poolman and Sutter were both nursing lower-body injuries.
With Poolman day-to-day, Sam Jardine has been slotting into the defensive pairings. Ilya Nikolaev was the forward scratch of the day and Mitch McLain and Alex Gallant were both in for Calgary again.
Game at a glance
Calgary and Abbotsford kicked off this game similarly to their spots in the standings. Quite even. Shots were very minimal for the Wranglers through the first 20 minutes, but they really weren’t getting shots through or on net. It wasn’t for lack of trying, however.
Dustin Wolf was in net for Calgary doing Dustin Wolf things and standing strong against his opponents to the West. There was only one penalty call in the whole first period that was against the Canucks no scoring took place. The Canucks out-shot the Wranglers 13-5 in the opening frame.
In the second, some scoring action started. Who other than Matt Coronato to get things going. Just 1:57 into the period, Dryden Hunt fed the puck over to Coronato, who was undefended in the perfect place to score with his ever-dangerous wrist shot. Clark Bishop also picked up a secondary assist on this goal.
At the 4:47 mark of the second, the Canucks would answer back with a goal by Linus Karlsson. Karlsson finished off a lengthy passing play that rotated around pretty much every Abbotsford skater in the Wranglers zone.
The scoring would take a break as some penalties came and went. It looked as if the Wranglers were going to get their lead back with 4:48 to go in the period when Rory Kerins did score on Abbotsford netminder, Arturs Silovs. Brady Lyle took the shot from the point, and Kerins appeared to deflect it.
Calgary celebrated the goal and the officials reviewed it and waved it off. Unfortunately, there wasn’t a clear explanation. With possible contact with Silovs or goaltender interference being a reason that could have prevented this goal from counting. Both William Stromgren and Ben Jones were deep in the zone hugging the crease and based on Silovs’ reaction, Jones may have made a small amount of contact that prevented him from making the save.
There was a bit of animosity to finish the period but not enough to warrant a penalty call. The second period finished at a good time for both sides to cool off a bit over the intermission and the score was 1-1 after 40 minutes of play. The Canucks still had the better of the shots in this frame with a 14-8 tally in shots.
In the third, it was pretty back and forth. The Canucks ended up with more chances to even up the scoring with three Wranglers penalties almost back to back from the eight-minute mark to just past the 14-minute mark.
The turning point of this game would hit in the last three-quarters of the third when Rory Kerins scored again and made sure this one stayed on the board. Jordan Oesterle took a shot that deflected almost outside of Kerins’ reach but he did a half-spin move to get the puck to the back of the net. Emilio Pettersen picked up the secondary assist on Kerins’ fourth goal of the season. Silovs didn’t have eyes on this shot until the puck was past him and this go-ahead goal came with just 3:12 to go in regulation.
The Wranglers put the Canucks in panic mode to try and even things up again and they pulled Silovs just over a minute after Kerins’ goal. Mere seconds after Silovs skated off the ice, the Canucks turned the puck over and Matt Coronato got it up to Dryden Hunt, who easily secured an empty-net insurance goal.
Clark Bishop also assisted on this goal that came at 18:00. That wasn’t the last of his contributions to this game either. Already riding a two-assist night, Bishop dropped the gloves with Canucks Captain, Chase Wouters with 16 seconds to go in the third period.
They had some battling tensions throughout the game and Wouters appeared to target Dryden Hunt with his elbow. Wouters and Bishop were called for fighting and Wouters was dealt an additional double minor with the official call being high-sticking.
This game finished up with a 3-1 final score for the Wranglers and with Dustin Wolf stopping 41 of 42 Abbotsford shots. The Wranglers put up 26 shots of their own and scored on three (arguably four) of them. Rory Kerins earned the first star of the night, Dustin Wolf earned the second star and Matt Coronato earned the third.
Scoring stat summary
Jordan Oesterle – 1A
Clark Bishop – 2A
Dryden Hunt – 1G, 1A
Rory Kerins – 1G
Matt Coronato – 1G, 1A
Emilio Pettersen – 1A
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Calgary will play another back-to-back series this week with game two between these teams taking place on Sunday afternoon. They’ll look to keep their perfect season record against the Canucks in another 1:00 p.m. MT game to finish their week.
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