OKLAHOMA CITY – William Ahlrik scored a hat trick and Dylan Johnson made 20 stops for his second shutout in four games as the Oklahoma Warriors blanked the Amarillo Wranglers 5-0 Thursday at Blazers Ice Centre.
Drew Sutton scored what would stand as the game-winning goal just four minutes and three seconds into the first period. Johnson turned away an Amarillo dump-in from center ice to Owen Baumgartner behind the net, and Baumgartner skated the length of the ice before setting up Sutton’s 22nd of the season from the right circle. Nearly eight minutes later, Ahlrik netted his first. Domenick Evtimov made a shot-pass from the blueline to Joey DelGreco in tight and Ahlrik finished the play by potting the rebound across the slot. Twenty-four seconds later, Ahlrik scored again, for the fastest two goals by a single Warrior into an occupied net in franchise history. Max Dronen and DelGreco baited the Amarillo netminder into coming to the top of his crease and Ahlrik caught him out of position at the side of the net for his second of the game. The Warriors took a 3-0 lead into intermission.
Oklahoma added to its lead under three minutes into the middle period. Blaise Miller tipped a puck free from in front of his own net and set up Therien Thiesing for a rush. Thiesing skated it to neutral ice and continued the play ahead of him to William Lawson-Body, who extended Oklahoma’s lead to 4-0. Ahlrik capped off his hat trick, and the game’s scoring, by tipping in a Garrett Horsager shot from Sutton on the powerplay to make it 5-0 Oklahoma with 12:29 remaining in the second period.
Johnson turned aside 12 shots in the third period and secured his second shutout of the season, in his fourth start with the Warriors.
The Warriors and the Wranglers will meet for two more 7:15 p.m. puck drops this weekend- Friday and Saturday at Blazers Ice Centre. Following Saturday’s game, the Warriors’ St. Patrick’s Day themed jerseys will be auctioned off.