ABBOTSFORD, BC -- The Abbotsford Heat beat to the Oklahoma City Barons (AHL affiliate of the Edmonton Oilers) 3-2 on Friday night at the Abbotsford Entertainment and Sports Centre. The Heat remain in second place in the West Division with a 40-25-5-2 record and 87 points.
Now riding a three-game win streak, the Heat are rounding into form as the regular season winds down. Goaltender Joni Ortio shut the door for the Heat making 35 saves, earning him first star honours. Heat defenceman Brett Kulak registered his first career AHL point with an assist on the game’s first goal.
Less than two minutes into the first period, the Heat opened the scoring on a goal by Brett Olson assisted by Corey Locke and Kulak at 1:29. Shortly after, Derek Smith made it 2-0 Heat with an unassisted goal at 5:34.
Barons forward Matthew Ford scored the lone tally of the second period on the power play at 5:37, cutting the Heat lead to 2-1.
The Heat restored their two goal lead at the 7:32 mark of the third period, with a goal by Blair Jones assisted by Ben Street. With the goaltender pulled, the Barons closed the gap to 3-2, when Taylor Fedun found the back of the net at 17:38, but that’s as close as they would come.
The Heat finished the night zero for four on the power play, and killed off five of six Barons man advantages.
Ortio made 35 saves on 37 shots and secured his 25th win of the season. His counterpart Richard Bachman, stopped 16 of 19 shots and settled for the loss.
The Heat wrap up their regular season home schedule when they take on the Oklahoma City Barons on Sunday, April 14th at 1:00 PM at the Abbotsford Entertainment and Sports Centre. For tickets, please call 1-877-452-HEAT (4328) or visit us online at www.abbotsfordheat.com.