BOISE, Idaho – May 1 is celebrated as May Day across the globe, recognizing laborers and working class people in cultures far and wide.
For the Idaho Steelheads, however, it was cause for celebrating their hard work and surviving another day in the 2019 Kelly Cup Playoffs.
Idaho staved off postseason elimination in Game 4 of the Mountain Division Final, defeating the Tulsa Oilers 4-2 on Wednesday night at CenturyLink Arena.
Steelheads captain A.J. White led by example very early on, scoring just 1:57 into regulation gameplay. His doorstep goal after a nice setup from winger Kale Kessy gave Idaho their first lead since early in Game 1. Kessy also facilitated on the Steelies’ second goal, centering the puck to forward Reid Petryk after forcing a turnover from Tulsa defenseman Erik Drapluk. Petryk’s resulting slap shot goal came at 10:15 of period one. Idaho finished off their first period scoring just 27 seconds later, as forward Steve McParland smacked in a loose puck in the crease of Tulsa netminder Devin Williams.
Carrying a solid 3-0 lead into the second period, Idaho yielded their first goal of the night from Oilers forward Alex Dostie at 12:06. Idaho’s delayed response to said goal came in the third period, as forward Elgin Pearce threaded a backhand feed to an advancing Mitch Moroz, who collected the puck and wristed a goal top shelf at 5:30 of period three to make it 4-1, Steelheads.
Tulsa would answer 28 seconds later, as Dostie sauced a pass to alternate captain Charlie Sampair for the bandhand goal by Idaho goaltender Tomas Sholl. No additional scoring in the third gave Idaho their first victory of the series, and at least one more game in round number two.
Idaho will host one last time in the divisional final for Game 5 on Friday night at 7:10pm MT. If necessary, Game 6 will bring both teams back to the BOK Center in Tulsa on Sunday, May 5 at 6:05pm CT. Should Idaho be victorious again, Game 7 would be slated for Monday, May 6 at 6:05pm CT.