Corbett, Moroz score five points each as Oil Kings sweep first series with Raiders
Edmonton likely awaits winner of Wheat Kings-Pats series
EDMONTON - After the huddle around goaltender Tristan Jarry, after the handshakes and the satisfaction that being the hero in a series-clinching win brings, defenceman Cody Corbett did the most hockey thing ever.
Corbett and Mitch Moroz each had five-point nights (two goals, three assists) to lead the Edmonton Oil Kings to a 6-2 win over the Prince Albert Raiders on Wednesday night, wrapping up the best-of-seven Western Hockey League series in four games.
“I don’t think I should get any of the credit,” Corbett said, after scoring all five of his playoff points in one game.
“The guys in that locker-room … unbelievable screens by Henrik (Samuelsson) and Mitch (Moroz) on my two goals and on my assists, as well, I was giving the guys the puck and they were finding ways to find the back of the net.”
Corbett led the way for the Oil Kings, giving them two of their three power-play markers, with Moroz scoring the other one on a Corbett rebound early in the third period for his second goal of the night.
Tyler Robertson and Curtis Lazar rounded out Edmonton’s offence in a game where the Oil Kings never trailed and were tied only once, 1-1, at the midpoint of the first period.
Tristan Jarry made 25 saves for the Oil Kings, while Raiders goalie Cole Cheveldave turned aside 35 shots.
Game 4 was the Oil Kings’ best showing on the power play; something that foiled the team down the stretch of their playoff run a year ago.
“I thought our first unit was outstanding,” Oil Kings head coach Derek Laxdal said of his power play.
“Cody, Dysin (Mayo), Curtis, Sammy (Henrik Samuelsson) and Mitch did a great job of doing what we asked them to do, to generate some offence. We were three-for-three at one point there. It was the difference in the series and the difference in the game.”
Experience certainly helped the Oil Kings as well. Moroz and Corbett have been a part of the Oil Kings teams that went to the Memorial Cup in 2012 and the Western Hockey League final in 2013. Both players stepped up when they had to put the eight-seeded Raiders away.
“It’s big,” said Moroz, an Edmonton Oilers prospect. “We have some guys out there who have been through this and we’re trying to bring the young guys into this and show them how to win games and close out series. That experience paid off for the first series here.”
Laxdal didn’t know that Moroz and Corbett had five-point nights.
“Is that what they had?” he asked. “Good for them. Cody didn’t have any before (Wednesday’s) game. You knew they were going to break out at some point and time. You knew Mitch was going to score some points himself and good on them.
“They’re a big part of our hockey club and they’re a big part of our success and their contributions on the power play, Mitch was right in front of the net and I thought Cody did a really good job. We did a video session with Cody one-on-one and showed him a couple of the looks he had and he really responded.”
The top-seeded Oil Kings will get some time to rest up as they prepare for their second-round opponent. The seventh-ranked Brandon Wheat Kings lead the Regina Pats 3-0, with Game 4 set for Friday night in Brandon.
If the Wheat Kings close out that series, they would face Edmonton in Round 2 of the Eastern Conference playoffs.
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