SHAWINIGAN, Que. – Henrik Samuelsson broke a tie 13:42 into the third period as the Edmonton Oil Kings downed the host Shawinigan Cataractes 4-3 in a wild opening game of the Memorial Cup on Friday night.
The teams went into the third period tied at 1 and then piled up five goals over the final 20 minutes.
Griffin Reinhart and Martin Gernat got early third-period goals for Edmonton, only to see Anton Zlobin and Michael Chaput, with his second of the night, tie it up again for Shawinigan.
Shawinigan’s failure to clear the zone let Samuelsson, son of former NHL defenseman Ulf Samuelsson, finish a three-way passing play with Stephane Legault and Reinhart to give the Oil Kings back the lead.
Kristians Pelss also scored for the Western Hockey League champions.
The round-robin portion of the four-team tournament continues tonight when the defending champion Saint John Sea Dogs of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League face the Ontario Hockey League’s London Knights.
The Cataractes were playing their first game since being knocked out in the second round of QMJHL playoffs by Chicoutimi on April 17.
It was the 27th anniversary of the Cataractes’ 6-1 loss to Prince Albert in the 1985 Memorial Cup final.
The Oil Kings were coming off a Game 7 win over Portland in the Western Hockey League final on Sunday.