DRAPLUK NETS FIRST PRO HAT TRICK AS OILERS TOP EAGLES
Tulsa defenseman Eric Drapluk scores a natural hat trick to lead Oilers to a 6-3 comeback win over Colorado.
TULSA, OK – The Tulsa Oilers found an unlikely hero Saturday night in a 6-3 comeback win over the Colorado Eagles at the BOK Center. Second-year defenseman Eric Drapluk sparked the surge with the team’s second natural hat trick in six days, the first of his career.
The Eagles jumped out to a 2-0 lead by the 12:10 mark of the first period. Former Oilers forward Ryan Olsen fired the first Colorado in past Devin Williams from the left circle, and Ryan Harrison buried the second marker at the end of an odd-man rush from the right circle. The Oilers tied the score at 2-2 before the break with back-to-back goals from Joey Sides and Drapluk just 23 seconds apart.
Neither team was able to gain the lead during the first 16 minutes of the second period, before Drapluk scored his second of the night at 16:43 of the frame shortly after Tulsa killed off a penalty. The Pembroke Pines, FL native completed his first career hat trick when he picked off a Colorado pass in the neutral zone and lifted a shot into the top of the net with 24 seconds left in the period to give the Oilers a 4-2 lead after two.
Oilers leading scorer Charlie Sampair wheeled into the left circle and snapped a shot over the shoulder of Eagles goaltender Devin Williams for his 27th of the season to make it 5-2 in the third period. Colorado forward Drayson Bowman cut Tulsa’s lead to two with a late goal off of a face-off win, but reigning ECHL Player of the Week Garrett Ladd tallied an empty net goal to put the game out of reach.
Tulsa completed a five-game home stand 4-0-0-1, earning nine out of a possible ten points, and moves into fourth place in the Mountain Division playoff race with 16 games remaining.
The late season series between the Oilers and Eagles shifts to Loveland, CO for three meetings next week at the Budweiser Event Center. The first game is Wednesday at 8:05pm CT. Catch the action on the Sports Animal, www.tulsaoilers.com or ECHL.TV, with coverage starting at 7:45pm