Rush start fast, hold off Oilers
ECHL

Rush start fast, hold off Oilers

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The Rapid City Rush got back on track early in the season as they took an early lead and held on for a 5-4 victory over the Tulsa Oilers at the BOK Center in Tulsa, Okla., on Friday night.  

Both teams exchanged goals in the first period with the Oilers taking an early advantage on a goal from Cam Knight, assisted by Dakota Joshua and Adam Pleskach in the seventh minute.

Seven minutes later, the Rush had an answer as Tyler Poulson took a pass from Keeghan Howdeshell and Giovanni Fiore and found the back of the net to tie it at one goal apiece.

The game wouldn’t be tied long, however, as Rapid City’s Peter Quenneville found the back of the net on assists from Alex Rauter and Richard Coyne with 40 seconds remaining in the first period.

The Rush extended their lead to 3-1 in the first three minutes of the second on a goal from Gage Torrel, assisted by Tyler Coulter and Trey Phillips.

Tulsa had an answer less than four minutes later when Ian McNulty scored on assists by J.J. Piccinich and Knight.

After a 10-minute scoring drought for both teams, Rapid City regained the two-goal advantage on a goal from Brennan Saulnier to close out the second period.

While there wasn’t much action on the offensive end in the first 18 minutes of the third period, the excitement kicked up in the last two minutes starting with Saulnier’s second goal of the night on an empty-netter.

The Oilers wouldn’t go away as they cut the lead to 5-3 on a goal from Piccinich with 40 seconds remaining in the period.

A little over 20 seconds later, Piccinich would add another to make it a 5-4 content with 18 seconds remaining.

The Rush defense held up the rest of the way to seal the win.

Saulnier, Fiore and Ryker Killins led the way for Rapid City with five shots apiece.

Although the scoreboard didn’t show it, the Oilers were the aggressor on the offensive end for most of the night as they outshot the Rush 41-30 (including 14-6 in the third).  

Rapid City (9-4-2) will close out the weekend road trip today when it travels to Kansas City to take on the Mavericks at 6:05 p.m.

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