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WHL Roundup: St. Croix scores winner as Oil Kings defeat Winterhawks 4-3

Thursday, 02.28.2013 / 1:44 AM / News

The Canadian Press

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WHL Roundup: St. Croix scores winner as Oil Kings defeat Winterhawks 4-3

Michael St. Croix made sure the Edmonton Oil Kings emerged on top in a battle between the WHL's conference leaders.

St. Croix scored the winning goal with 63 seconds left to play to complete a Oil Kings comeback as Edmonton defeated the Portland Winterhawks 4-3 on Wednesday night.

With Portland defenceman Tyler Wotherspoon off for hooking, St. Croix connected for his 33rd of the year at 18:57 to win it for the Oil Kings, who lead the Eastern Conference at 45-15-5.

Portland had the only goal of the first period, as Winterhawks centre Nicolas Petan opened the scoring on the power play at seven minutes into the frame.

Travis Ewanyk tied the game for Edmonton three minutes into the second, but 10 minutes later the Winterhawks regained the lead when Troy Rutkowski scored a power-play goal.

Taylor Leier made it 3-1 Portland at 16:05, but Edmonton's Dylan Wruck cut the deficit with three seconds left in the second.

Trevor Cheek evened the game with his 27th goal of the year early in the third, with an assist by St. Croix.

Mac Carruth made 38 saves for the Western Conference-leading Winterhawks (51-11-3).

Elsewhere in the WHL, it was: Swift Current 3 Brandon 2 (OT); Prince Albert 7 Regina 0; Saskatoon 3 Calgary 2 (SO); Kootenay 2 Medicine Hat 0; Vancouver 5 Kamloops 3; Lethbridge 5 Victoria 4; and Spokane 4 Everett 1.

Broncos 3 Wheat Kings 2

At Brandon, Man., rookie defenceman Brycen Martin scored his second goal of the season at 1:05 into overtime as the Swift Current Broncos (30-27-7) edged the Wheat Kings (21-37-6).

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Blades 3 Hitmen 2 (SO)

At Calgary, Nathan Burns scored the lone goal of the shootout as the Saskatoon Blades (40-21-3) edged the Hitmen (40-18-5) to record their 17th straight victory.

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Ice 2 blank Tigers 0

At Medicine Hat, Alta., Mackenzie Skapski made 42 saves and Brock Montgomery's power-play goal at 4:07 of the first period held up as the Kootenay Ice (32-29-2) beat the Medicine Hat Tigers (33-29-3).

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Giants 5 Blazers 3

At Kamloops, B.C., Brendan Rouse scored a tiebreaking goal at 5:53 of the third period as the Vancouver Giants (17-45-2) beat the Blazers (41-18-5).

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Hurricanes 5 Royals 4

At Victoria, Jamal Watson had a pair of goals as the Lethbridge Hurricanes (26-28-9) upend the Royals (32-25-5).

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Chiefs 4 Silvertips 1

At Everett, Wash., Brenden Kichton scored two goals to lead the Spokane Chiefs (37-24-2) over the Silvertips (22-36-5).

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Raiders 7 Pats 0

At Prince Albert, Sask., Luke Siemens made 22 saves and Carson Perreaux had a goal and two assists as the Raiders (35-23-6) hammered the Regina Pats (21-35-7).

Quote of the Day

The groove of being behind a bench is going to be interesting at first, but thank God we have a few exhibition games to get rid of those cobwebs. Overall the excitement of it all and the freshness and coming back refreshed, all those things are going to be assets. If [the players] come ready to give their best effort in practice and games, good things are going to happen. I'm always looking for results. It's not always on the scoreboard. It's winning and building something.

— Bryan Trottier on making his return to coaching as an assistant with the Sabres