Avery Peterson scored twice in the second period, Peter Quenneville had three assists, and Brad Barone was near perfect on 30 shots as the Rapid City Rush claimed a 4-1 win over the Tulsa Oilers on Wednesday night. The win starts off a three-game series against the Oilers, with games two and three taking place on Friday and Saturday, respectively.
The Rush started off the scoring entries in the latter half of the first period, carrying a 2-0 lead into the intermission. Hunter Garlent got the Rush on the board when he deflected a Butrus Ghafari blue line shot past Oilers goalie Devin Williams, giving the Rush a 1-0 lead with 6:34 left in the first (Ghafari and Gabe Chabot assisted). Towards the end of the period, Stephen Baylis scored for the first time since March 2nd at Wichita to double the Rush lead. With 2:16 left, Tyson Empey streaked into the Oilers zone, dropped it to Peter Quenneville, and then gloved down a pass back from him. In point blank range of the net, he found Baylis on the doorstep, with him roofing it over Williams to push the Rush to a 2-0 advantage (Empey and Quenneville assisted).
Under a minute and a half into the third, Avery Peterson struck for the first of two goal lamp ignitions to increase the Rush stranglehold. At 1:28 on the first Rush power play of the game, Peterson launched a rocket of a one-timer off of a Quenneville pass from the high slot to triple the Rush lead at 3-0 (Quenneville and Ian Edmondson assisted). Tulsa cut into the Rush lead on a power play of their own thanks to Conor Landrigan, who scored his first professional goal in his with 8:43 left in the second to make it a 3-1 hockey game (J.C. Brassard and Matt Lane assisted). Peterson then countered moments later for the Rush when he rifled a shot off of another Quenneville pass just inside the blue line to re-establish the Rush lead at 4-1 with 4:31 left in the second period (Quenneville and Darren Brady assisted). The fourth Rush goal prompted the removal of Devin Williams from the Oilers net, replaced by Hayden Hawkey, making his Oilers debut. Hawkey stopped all 7 shots he saw in relief, and neither team could produce another goal, leading to a Rush 4-1 win to start the series.
Brad Barone stopped all but one of 30 shots on net, securing his fourth win with the Rush in five starts (4-1-0-0 with the Rush, 9-3-1-1 overall).
The Rush continue theur three-game series against the Tulsa Oilers. Puck drop for the final two games on Friday, April 23rd, and Saturday, April 24th is slated for 6:05 p.m. MDT at the BOK Center.