BY FRASER RODGERS
Prince George Cougars
The Prince George Cougars are leaving Alberta without a win, after their 2-1 setback against the Edmonton Oil Kings on Sunday afternoon. The Cougars lost all three games on the Central Division road trip over the weekend, and are winless in the last seven games.
Vladislav Mikhalchuk scored on a power-play in the first period to give the Cougars a lead through the opening 20-minutes, but the Oil Kings scored a pair of goals in the second period, both from Conner McDonald, to pull ahead for good.
Taylor Gauthier turned aside 30 of 32 shots in the Cougars’ crease. The Cougars’ power-play manufactured one goal on two opportunities. Todd Scott stopped 27-shots in the Oil Kings’ net and the Edmonton power-play went 1-4 on the afternoon.
Mikhalchuk opened the scoring from nearly the goal line, as he went upstairs on the glove-side of Scott at 9:51 of the first period. That lead held up until nearly the seven-minute mark of the second period.
McDonald tied the game for Edmonton a solo rush down the right-wing. The Oil Kings’ defenceman streaked down the right, before squeezing a shot through Gauthier’s arm. McDonald then put the Oil Kings ahead two-minutes later, scoring a power-play goal at 8:55, which stood up to be the game-winner. McDonald fired a one-timer from the blue-line that went grazed the post before going in over Gauthier’s shoulder.
The Cougars have lost their last four on the road. Josh Maser returned to the Cougars’ line up Sunday, after missing the previous three games due to a suspension.
Cougars [1-0] Vladislav Mikhalchuk (17) from Joel Lakusta and Ryan Schoettler 9:51 PP
Oil Kings [1-1] Conner McDonald (11) 6:48
Oil Kings [2-1] Conner McDonald (12) from Quinn Benjafield and Vladimir Alistrov 8:55PP GWG
*GWG= game-winning goal PP= power-play goal
Cougars-Taylor Gauthier (Loss) 30/32 59:20
Oil Kings- Todd Scott (won 27/28 60:00
Oil Kings- 1/4
UP NEXT: The Cougars (16-27-3-2) continue their five-game stretch on the road next Friday, February 1, against the Kamloops Blazers. The Cougars return home February 5-6 against the Vancouver Giants.