BLAINE, Minn. – The Oklahoma Warriors earned four-straight victories at the 2022 North American Hockey League Showcase. Led by forwards Hunter Jones and William Lawson-Body, who sit atop the league scoreboard at first and third respectively, the team outscored its opponents 21-7 and has the league’s best differential of +14. Oklahoma is one of four clubs to come out of the showcase with a perfect record; the other three teams are South Division rival Amarillo Wranglers, Janesville Jets and Austin Bruins.
Four Warriors came out of the Greatest Show On Ice with four-game point streaks. Jones recorded a five-point night against the Minot Minotauros on the first day, then finished the showcase with 10 points (4G+6A) overall. Brendan Williams notched four goals and three assists across the four games, Owen Baumgartner scored twice and had five assists and Joey Delgreco finished with two goals and three assists for five points.
Only Down for (Half) A Minot, Warriors Win 7-3
The first day of action saw the Warriors face off against the Minot Minotauros. The game remained scoreless throughout much of the first period until Minot’s Owen Hanson broke the ice with a late powerplay goal at 18:12. Oklahoma answered back after only 28 seconds later when Hunter Jones would tip in a Therien Thiesing point shot, recording the first of his 10 points at the Showcase, and first of five against Minot.
The middle frame would see three more Warriors goals, two more points from Jones and the beginning of Owen Baumgarner and William Lawson-Body’s production. Eight seconds into a powerplay, Brendan Williams saw an uncontested lane to the net thanks to a falling Minotauro. Williams scooped up a loose puck and fired it past the netminder to give the Warriors their first lead of the season 3:07 into the period. Thirty-nine seconds later, Baumgartner drew attention to himself, moving from the right side of the zone to the left, and sent a crisp feed through the slot for Joey Delgreco to one-time into the back of the net. Oklahoma added to its lead before the end of the stanza with a shorthanded goal. Lawson-Body soared a puck out of his zone on the backhand to find Jones streaking through the neutral zone past the Minot defense. Jones made a forehand-backhand move in tight and sifted the puck in 5-hole to give the Warriors a 4-1 lead 8:48 into the second, and that score held into the third.
Minot came out of the intermission strong and found the first goal of the period 3:07 into it, but once again the Warriors had a quick response. At 3:49 of the period, Jones baited Minot goaltender Carl Lido into overcommitting to his left for a kick save that resulted in a massive rebound on the far side of the slot. Lawson-Body poked the rebound into the yawning cage in front of him to make it a 5-1 game. The Minotauros would add another goal later in the third but were once again answered by the Warriors. Williams would score his second of the game at 8:34, and Baumgartner added to his team’s total to make it 7-3 with 4:28 remaining on the clock.
Offense Shines Again, Warriors Best Bobcats 7-2
The Oklahoma Warriors scored 7 goals for a second-straight game and seven different skaters recorded multiple point games as the Warriors beat the Bismarck Bobcats Thursday in Blaine.
The Bobcats scored the first goal of the game on a powerplay 7:04 into the opening period, but the Warriors answered back just 29 seconds later. Joey Delgreco sent a pass from the corner to the slot where Rylan Brady fired home the game-tying goal at 7:33. Brendan Williams grabbed a lead for Oklahoma at 10:05 when he scored an unassisted, backhand goal on a breakaway. The Warriors added two more goals before the end of the first, from Max Dronen and William Lawson-Body, to increase the lead to 4-1 after one period.
The second period saw more scoring from both sides. While on the powerplay, Cole Teleki sent a blueline pass from the far side of the ice to Hunter Jones on the near-side wall. Jones then ripped a shot toward the net that Brady tipped in at 5:47 for his second of the game. Down 5-1, the Bobcats showed a flicker of life and scored with just under 6 minutes left in the middle frame. Therien Thiesing provided a response from the Warriors with 2:29 left in the second when he scored from the blueline to make it 6-2 Oklahoma. Jones recorded his fifth assist of the week, and Lawson-Body recorded his fourth on the Thiesing goal, and shots favored the Warriors 26-13 after 40 minutes.
The third period would see one more goal added by the potent Warriors offense. Delgreco and Brady assisted on Drew Sutton’s first of the season with 3:42 left in the game to make it 7-2. Oklahoma tacked on 11 more shots in the final frame for a game-total of 37, and goaltender Cameron Korpi stopped 17 of 19 to secure the 2-0 record after 2 games of play at the 2022 NAHL Showcase.
Hasselgren Grabs Three Assists, Warriors Beat Nordiques 4-1
Malte Hasselgren helped set up three goals and Hunter Jones, William Lawson-Body and Owen Baumgartner each had multi-point outings as the Oklahoma Warriors topped the Maine Nordiques 4-1 to remain undefeated through three days at the 2022 NAHL Showcase.
The Warriors peppered the Maine crease with shots during the first period, but it would not be until 16:10 that they found a way past Nordiques goaltender Kael Depape. Lawson-Body carried the puck past center ice before passing up to Brendan Williams on the far side. Williams flopped a puck on net from the right-side wall and Depape gave up a huge rebound to the front of the net where Jones finished off the play to get the Warriors on the board 1-0.
Oklahoma doubled its lead 6:05 into the middle period, seconds after a powerplay expired. Before the Nordiques skater could get back into the play from the penalty box, Baumgartner spun a pass behind his back to Hasselgren on the near side. Hasselgren then sent a cross-ice feed to Joey Delgreco who buried the 2-0 goal. The Warriors continued to hold strong defensively and went into the second intermission up 2-0.
The powerplay would go 2/2 in the third period, and scoring started with 13:21 left. Rylan Brady and Hasselgren set up Jones, who found open ice down the slot and fired a wrist shot into the top of the net to make a 3-0 score. Oklahoma jumped up to a 4-0 lead at the 11:12 mark with another powerplay goal. Lawson-Body and Hasselgren set up Baumgartner, who scored his second goal of the season. The Nordiques found the back of the net with just under six and a half minutes remaining, but the Warriors held on to win 4-1.
Warriors Shut Down Generals 3-1, Sweep Showcase
The Oklahoma Warriors defeated the Northeast Generals 3-1 Saturday at the Schwan Super Rink to secure their 2022 NAHL Showcase sweep and improve to 4-0 on the young 2022-23 season.
Max Dronen scored the lone goal of the first period for the Warriors on the powerplay, 4:11 into the game. Brendan Williams and Hunter Jones assisted on the opening goal, continuing each of their point streaks to four games. The Warriors would nearly escape the period with a 1-0 lead, but while playing 4-on-3, they won a faceoff to a vacant point-position in the neutral zone for what proved to be an important turnover. Northeast’s Jared Scott stole the loose puck near center ice and scored on a breakaway with just 48 seconds remaining in the frame, tying things up 1-1 after 20 minutes.
Oklahoma had the lone goal of the second frame, three seconds past the halfway point of the game. Williams potted in a rebound off a net-front scramble to make it 2-0 at 10:03. Marshall Beaker’s point shot earned him an assist on the play, and Baumgartner had the secondary helper to increase his point streak to four games.
Just over five minutes into the third, Drew Sutton added insurance with the 3-1 goal on the powerplay. Joey Delgreco pulled back and soared a shot in from the blueline that ricocheted off the pipe and out to Sutton, who buried the rebound. Delgreco’s assist marked his fifth point of the showcase and continued his point streak to six games going back to his two games played with the team last season.
The Warriors will begin South Division play for the first time in the 2022-23 season Saturday, September, 24, when they visit the Lone Star Brahmas at NYTEX Sports Centre for a 7:30 p.m. puck drop.
For media inquiries, please contact Erik Konwinski at email@example.com. Follow along all season on social media! Facebook: (Oklahoma Warriors NAHL), Twitter and Instagram: (@okWarriors_NAHL).