TULSA, Okla. – The Tulsa Oilers looked like they had their game with the Utah Grizzlies well in hand after racing out to a three-goal lead early on, but that lead evaporated and the visitors skated away with a 5-3 win in front of 4,394 in the BOK Center on Saturday night.
A fortunate turnover by the Grizzlies resulted in an Ian McNulty unassisted strike at 11:25 of the first, which was followed up by two quick goals in the second by Robby Jackson and new Oiler Jacob Benson. Jackson and Benson scored within a minute of each other and for a moment it looked like the Oilers had firm control of the game.
The Grizzlies, however, had other ideas.
Griffen Molino ruined Oilers goalie Devin Williams attempt at a shutout by weaving his way through the Oilers defense and scoring unassisted. That was followed by a power play strike by Jack Jenkins to narrow the lead to a goal, and then an equalizer by Yuri Terao evened the scoreboard at three-all.
Terao followed that with a goal that was initially waved off by the referee, but video replay confirmed a good goal and Utah assumed the lead for the first time in the contest. An insurance mark by Ty Lewis in the third period past Olle Eriksson Ek completed the come-from-behind victory by the Grizzlies.
It was a common refrain of late for Tulsa, which is the inability to hold a lead. It wasn’t quite as ridiculous as the previous night’s effort, in which the Oilers scored first and then allowed four goals on the next ten shots, but it is one of several problems the Oilers and their Head Coach Rob Murray need to solve moving forward.
The Oilers will return to the BOK Center on Sunday afternoon when they host the Wichita Thunder to complete the three-game weekend set.
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