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BLOG: Hamilton scores in fourth OT to lift Barons

by Chris Wescott / Edmonton Oilers

Curtis Hamilton scored 16 seconds into the fourth overtime period, lifting Oklahoma City to a 2-1 win over Utica in game one of their Western Conference Semi Final series.

Richard Bachman made 56 saves for the Barons, and Jacob Markstrom made 65 saves for Utica. The game lasted 120 minutes and 16 seconds, as the sixth longest game in AHL history.

Mitch Moroz nearly potted his first of the playoffs in a scoreless first period, however, the goal was waved off by officials due to a hand pass.

Utica’s Kent Huskins scored at 17:10 of the opening frame for the 1-0 lead. Huskins has played over 300 NHL games and won a Stanley Cup with Anaheim in 2007.

Although the Barons doubled up the Comets in shots during the opening period, 14-7, they trailed heading into the first intermission.

Kellen Jones, a seventh-round pick of the Oilers in 2010, scored the Barons first of the game at 4:13 of the second. Jones showed great finish, burying a breakaway chance to draw OKC even with the Comets.

The Barons put up 40 shots in regulation, but couldn’t solve Utica goaltender Jacob Markstrom again to end things early. The game went to overtime.

8:10 into overtime, Andrew Miller had a great power play chance to end the game, alone in front of the net, but was denied by Markstrom.

With 7:11 remaining in OT, Kellen Jones’ backhand try was stopped by a brilliant save by Markstrom.

Utica outshot the Barons 11-8 in the first overtime period as the game stayed knotted at one.

Double overtime meant it became the longest game in Barons history.

The Comets had a glorious opportunity in that period to take the win, as Matthew Ford was whistled for hooking at 17:14. However, the Barons killed off that penalty and a third overtime was necessary.

The first five minutes of triple overtime belonged to the Barons, who had numerous opportunities to end the game. That included a long shift, in which they hemmed the Comets in their zone.

Brandon Davidson took a high-sticking call at 9:22 of the third overtime, giving Utica another opportunity to close it out. To that point, OKC had outshot the Comets by a 6-0 margin in that period. One again, the Barons were able to kill off the Comets man advantage.

The Barons ensuing power play went by without a goal as well, despite a big chance by Ford in deep.

With under 4:30 to play in the third overtime, Bachman turned away a 2-on-1 drive to keep the Barons alive. And again, the game needed more time.

Hamilton, chosen 48th overall by the Oilers in 2010, spun around and whipped a shot on net that found twine just 16 seconds into the fourth overtime period to lift OKC to victory.

Game two is on Friday, in Utica at 5 p.m. MDT.

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