After avoiding the sweep the night before, the Tulsa Oilers looked to tie the series against the Allen Americans in Game Four at the BOK Center in Tulsa. Kevin Carr made his fourth straight start in the playoffs for the Oilers, while Joel Rumpel was in net for the Americans.
The first period saw much of what we’ve seen already in the shot totals by the Americans as they outshot the Oilers 14-9 in the first twenty minutes. Tulsa was unable to break through on any of their chances, but the Americans did – controversially. Just after the 13:00 mark of the period, Gary Steffes received a breakout pass from Kevin Young. Steffes skated in a shot at the corner of the net and appeared to score, according to the linesman. Carr and the rest of the Oilers disagreed however. Without video replay in the league, the call on the ice stood, and Allen took a 1-0 lead.
Taking a look at the replay, the angle really gives an inconclusive look at the goal. Steffes’ shot went to the corner of the goal, and it’s hard to say if it crossed the goal line or not. It’s a 50/50 call, and not one I’d like to make.
Less than two minutes into the second period, the Americans extended the lead while they were on a penalty kill. Carr was occupied by Spencer Asuchak and trying to get the puck away, but Americans captain Jamie Schaafsma was lurking to pick up the puck and get a backhand shot past Carr for the goal.
The Oilers were able to make it a one-goal game once again at the 5:33 mark. While on a power play, Tommy Mele received a pass from T.J. Caig and put the puck home to make it a 2-1 Allen advantage.
In a rare feat this series, the Oilers were able to outshoot the Americans 15-8 in the second period.
Rumpel stayed perfect for the Americans in the third period, turning away all eight of the Oilers shots. Tulsa pulled their goaltender for the extra attacker late in regulation, but Greger Hanson put it away for the Americans with the empty netter, securing Game Four for Allen.
As the teams head back to Allen for Game Five, the Americans hold a 3-1 series lead. The Oilers will try to stave off elimination when the teams play on Tuesday at 7:05 pm Central Time.
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