Oilers Spoil Mallards Home Opener With 4-1 Win

MOLINE, IL – Just 24 hours removed from a 4-3 overtime setback to Quad City, the Tulsa Oilers bounced back for a 4-1 win over the Mallards on Saturday night at i wireless Arena.
The visitors capitalized on an early powerplay when Michel Beausoleil swept in a rebound for his second goal of the season and the Oilers second powerplay tally of the year.  Eight minutes later, Gary Steffes’ backhand beat Mallards goalie John Murray and the Oilers took a 2-0 advantage into the first intermission.  Steffes now has three goals in the first four games of the season.
Quad City’s lone tally came early in the second when Shayne Toporowski beat Ian Keserich but the Oilers responded to quickly push the lead back to two goals. After Drew Akins shot was deflected up in the air, the puck settled on the stick of Ryan Menei who found the twine to record his first goal of the season and his first as an Oiler.
The Oilers held onto their 3-1 lead through most of the third period until Ben Gordon’s empty netter put the game out of reach.  Tulsa directed 34 shots on goal and outshot the Mallards for a second straight night.
Ian Keserich, who made his second start of the season after giving up 5 goals against Wichita last weekend, was solid and steady in the Oilers goal all night.  The veteran netminder turned aside 27 of the 28 shots he faced and earned his first victory of the season.
The Oilers improved to 2-1-1 overall and 2-1-0 on the road.  Tulsa is back on home ice tomorrow afternoon for a 4:05 pm tilt with the Fort Worth Brahmas.

Oilers goalie Ian Keserich watches the puck as Mallards forward Obi Aduba positions himself near the net during Saturday’s 4-1 Tulsa win at i wireless Arena in Moline, IL (photo courtesy: Sarah Foster)

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