Okotoks Bisons
Bisons Sweep Strathmore to remain perfect
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Bisons Sweep Strathmore to remain perfect

The Okotoks Bisons are 4-0 on the 2018/19 season after back to back wins over the Strathmore Wheatland Kings on the weekend.

Friday night the Bisons had their home opener and doubled up the Wheatland Kings 4-2.

The Bisons dominated the opening period but, they would only be rewarded with a single goal. Late in the first period, the Bisons would get a power play and open the scoring. Austin O'Bray (assists to Jagger Thiessen and Travis Scott @16:50) would blast a shot that Brett Willan would get a piece of, but the puck would trickle into the net to give Okotoks a 1-0 lead. Okotoks outshot Strathmore 24-5 in the opening period, and Brett Willan makes many saves to keep his team in the game.

Early in the second, the Bisons would get into penalty trouble and Isaac Benoit (assists to Bailey Filkohazy and Lucas Muenchrath @ 2:39) would wrist a shot between the pads of Devin Reagan to even the game at one. The Bisons would continue to get into penalty trouble and have to kill off multiple penalties to keep the game tied 1-1 after two periods. Despite giving Strathmore four power plays in the second, the Bisons would outshoot them 19-11.

Early in the third Okotoks would get a power play and Tyler Bordt (assists to Jagger Thiessen and Joel Deeprose @0:51) would drive a shot over the shoulder of Willan to put the Bisons back on top 2-1. Later in the period Kyle Dunville (assists to Connor Taylor and Kyle Harrison @ 8:24) would jam in a loose puck to extend the Bison lead to 3-1. Just 25 seconds later Tyler Wirth (assists to Jaks Faris and Rylee Hebert @8:49) would find the loose puck and flick a shot behind Reagan to bring Strathmore within one. The Wheatland Kings would push for the equalizing goal and get a late power play, but on the penalty kill, Austin O'Bray would intercept a pass and fire the puck into the empty net to make it 4-2 Bisons. Strathmore would outshoot Okotoks 17-16 in the third period but finished 59-33 in favor of the Bisons.

Saturday night the two teams would play a rematch this time in Strathmore for the Wheatland Kings home opener. It was a game that the Bisons would show some resiliency and come from behind to earn a 3-2 shootout victory.

Early in the first Cole Busslinger would throw the puck to the front of the net and Eric Sandum (assists to Cole Busslinger and Adrian Kusu @3:29) would poke the puck behind Devin Reagan to make it 1-0. Late in the period, the Bisons would turn the puck over, and Jaks Faris would set up Garret Vander Ploeg (assists to Jaks Faris and Hayden Vander Pleog @17:28) who would wrist the puck over the outstretched arm of Regan to make it 2-0. Okotoks put on a lot of pressure to try and get on the board Riley Stovka would shut the door making all 14 saves in the opening period. Shots would favor the Bisons 14-8 in the opening frame.

The second period would see the Bisons get into penalty trouble and be shorthanded three times. However, Okotoks would kill off all three penalties against but still trailed 2-0 after two periods. Both teams would get nine shots in the middle period.

For most of the third period the Bisons would be on their heels and unable to get much going that is until they received a late power play. The power play wouldn't last long as Mitch Wolfe had his point shot stopped, but Connor Taylor (assists to Mitch Wolfe and Kyle Harrison @13:12) tucked the rebound between the pads of Stovka to cut the deficit to one. Okotoks would use that momentum go and after winning the ensuing faceoff drive to the net with an opportunity to score but Stovka kept the puck out, however on the play the Wheatland Kings would take another penalty and the Bisons power play went back to work. On the man advantage Mitch Wolfe (assists to Nic Jordan and Austin O'Bray @14:42) would sneak in off the point and wire a shot top shelf to tie the game at two. Shots favored Strathmore 14-8 in the third and were even at 31 apiece after regulation time.

In overtime, both teams would trade chances, but Regan and Stovka would keep the game tied at two. Shots were even 3-3 in overtime and finished 34-34.

For the first time, this season the Bisons were off to a shootout. Round one had Austin O'Bray would lose the handle on the puck while Isaac Benoit would try unsuccessfully to go blocker side on Devin Reagan. Round two is where the Bisons would open the scoring as Kyle Harrison went straight up the middle of the ice and snapped a shot under the arm of Stovka, Kyle Bracko tried to sneak a shot under the blocker of Reagan, but the Bison netminder would keep the puck out.  Jason Horn looked to seal the win for the Bisons in round three and similar to Kyle Harrison would go straight up the middle of the ice, but he put a shot over the glove hand of Stovka to give the Bisons a 3-2 (2-0 shootout) victory to remain perfect on the season.

Okotoks will be back in action on Friday, September 28th when they welcome the (1-0) Lomond Lakers to the Murray Arena. Puck drop will be at 8:00.

Story by: Chris Colwell @Cjcolwell


Recent Headlines
(10/17/2018) Bisons remain in first place after a weekend split
(10/9/2018) Bisons Winning Streak Snapped
(10/3/2018) Bisons Weekend Wrap Up September 28-30, 2018
(9/27/2018) Bisons Sweep Strathmore to remain perfect
(9/17/2018) Bisons Weekend Wrap Up September 15-16, 2018
(9/5/2018) Former Bisons Heading To NCAA
(7/18/2018) Upcoming Bisons Camps
(10/23/2017) Bison Forward Named Player Of The Week
(10/16/2017) Bisons Sweep Weekend Aginst Top Teams In The North
(4/30/2017) Bisons 27th Annual Golf Tournament
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STANDINGS
TEAM GP W L OL TP
Okotoks 10 8 1 1 17
Coaldale 9 7 1 1 15
High River 10 4 5 1 9
Strathmore 8 3 4 1 7
Cochrane 5 2 3 0 4
Lomond 6 2 4 0 4
Medicine Hat 7 1 4 2 4
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HEADLINES
Bisons remain in first place after a weekend split
Bisons Winning Streak Snapped
Bisons Weekend Wrap Up September 28-30, 2018
Bisons Sweep Strathmore to remain perfect
Bisons Weekend Wrap Up September 15-16, 2018
Former Bisons Heading To NCAA