Contributed By: Sean Emmett – Sun Country 99.7FM/High River Online, Oilers Colour Commentator
Photo Courtesy of: Allen Gimblett/Dynamic Photography
Another college-bound Oiler, a pair of wins, a pair of point streaks hit double digits, another Oilers' record broken, and another CJHL honourable mention.
Not a bad week for the Okotoks Oilers, who continue to roll through February once again.
After a convincing Family Day win over the Calgary Canucks on Monday, the Oilers had a few days of rest before heading into another weekend of action.
On Thursday, the Oilers announced 20 year-old forward Stephen Doane's commitment to the University of Wisconsin-Stout, making him the sixth active Oiler committed to play post-secondary hockey in the NCAA.
After a season each with the Drumheller Dragons and Grande Prairie Storm, Doane was acquired by the Oilers in the summer, and has 10 goals and 10 assists in 39 games this season.
With third place in the South Division secured for the Oilers, the squad rolled into Olds on Friday night, still chasing the Brooks Bandits for second.
Riley Morris earned the start, and performed admirably, stopping 32 of 35 shots as the Oilers edged the Olds Grizzlys 4-3.
Captain Tanner Ockey continues to play the best hockey of his AJHL career, and extended his point streak to 9 games with a goal and two assists in the win. Rhett Gardner also extended his streak to 9 games after notching a power-play goal.
The Brooks Bandits took down the Calgary Canucks in a shootout Friday night, meaning they would need only a single point over their next three games to clinch second place.
Regardless of standings, the Oilers returned home Saturday night with a tough task ahead, as the Camrose Kodiaks came to town for the sixth and final game of the regular season between the two rivals.
The Oilers had a strangle hold on the season series, winning four of five so far, with Camrose taking the last match-up 2-1 a week prior.
The Kodiaks got the early jump on the Oilers in the first, but Rhett Gardner replied for the Oilers in the second, his third straight game with a goal, before the Kodiaks' PJ Marracco, in just his second AJHL game, used his first AJHL goal to give his team a 2-1 lead heading into the third.
The green and gold needed little time on a shortened power-play in the third to respond, as Eric Krienke tipped home a Carson Beers point shot to tie it, with Gardner getting the other assist for his second point of the game, giving him seven goals and nine assists over his 10 game point streak.
After being out shot 26-16 in regulation, it was all Okotoks in overtime, as the Oilers out shot Camrose 6-0 in the extra frame.
After a pile of scoring chances, Captain Tanner Ockey sealed the comeback win with a hard wrist-shot from the top of the circle, also extending his point streak to 10 games. The Colorado College commit has scored a goal in five straight, and has 9 goals and 8 assists over his 10 game point streak.
The league front-runner for the AJHL MVP and Top Goalie awards, Nic Renyard, once again held down the fort for the Oilers, making 26 saves for his 30th win of the season.
It's another Oilers record for Renyard, who broke the previous record of 29 wins in a season, set by Brad Eidsness back in the 2007-2008 season. The stand-out goaltender has also set a team record for shutouts in a season with 5, breaking the record set by Eidsness in 2006-2007.
While the Oilers were celebrating a big win, so too were to Brooks Bandits, as they clinched second place in the AJHL South after defeating the Canmore Eagles.
The Oilers now have to wait a few more games to find out who their first round playoff opponent will be, as the Eagles and Olds Grizzlys jockey for position this week.
To round off a winning weekend, the team also earned another honourable mention in the weekly CJHL Rankings, but still can't crack that top 20.
Another busy week lies ahead as the Oilers finish off their regular season with road games against the Calgary Mustangs on Tuesday and the Brooks Bandits on Friday, before wrapping up the regular season with a home tilt against the Calgary Canucks.
The Oilers will also find out this week how many, if any, AJHL awards will be coming home to Okotoks, as the team earned a total of five nominations this season.