Red Deer Rebels defenceman Mason Ward tries to walk the blueline during WHL action Saturday night at the Centrium. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)

Edmonton Oil Kings blank Rebels 4-0

Oil Kings 4 Rebels 0

The Edmonton Oil Kings showed once again why they are the class of the Eastern Conference.

From the hop Saturday night at the Centrium, the visitors, who had a large contingency of Oil Kings fans that made the trip down to Red Deer, were dominant.

Edmonton scored twice in the first and added two more in the final frame and Beck Warm collected a 26-save shutout in the 4-0 victory. It was the seventh time Edmonton has beat the Rebels this year.

Red Deer started slow and never really found their footing, including trailing on the shot clock 22-6 at one point in the second period.

Rebels GM/head coach Brent Sutter, who was shown the gate late in the third period for arguing a penalty on Cam Hausinger, didn’t think his team did enough in the game to hang with the Oil Kings.

“We kept it tight, our goaltender had moments where he played really well. We never generated a whole lot, we did get a whole bunch going,” said Sutter.

“When we did their goalie seemed to make the easy save. I just think for the first 30 minutes of the game, we needed to push harder and have a better pace. We stayed in it right till the end. We kept battling, I thought the last 30 minutes we actually played pretty well.”

Early in the first, Oil Kings winger Riley Sawchuk made good on a power play. The Oil Kings veteran blasted a one-timer past Ethan Anders for his 24th goal of the year.

Mason Ward got caught throwing his stick on an unfortunate play in the first period. On the ensuing penalty shot, Carter Souch went backhand on Anders to put the visitors up 2-0.

With just under eight minutes to play in the game, things started to get out of hand. Cam Hausinger laid a big hit on an Oil Kings defender, then Tyler Horstmann stepped in and crosschecked the Rebels winger. Hausinger dropped the gloves, but Hortsmann did not. Hausinger was given the extra penalty on the play and shortly after it expired, Dylan Guenther buried for Edmonton to make it 3-0.

“I don’t understand that. Hausinger makes a great hit in the neutral zone and guy comes over and cross checks him twice, lunges at him like he wants to fight. Cam drops the gloves and yet they’re going to put us shorthanded, I think it’s a joke personally,” Sutter said.

“Ref makes the call, I just don’t understand it at all.”

From there, each team registered two fighting majors in the final 1:16 of the game.

Anders finished the night with 33 saves, and was handed his first loss of the year when he made more than 30 stops.

The Rebels will be back on the ice on March 6 when they host the Spokane Chiefs.

Email sports tips to Byron Hackett

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