GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — The Oklahoma City Barons defeated the Grand Rapids Griffins 4-2 to even the best-of-seven Western Conference Finals 1-1.
The Barons scored three times in the third period to cap off a strong night at Van Andel Arena. Oklahoma City outshot the Griffins 37-22.
The Griffins opened the scoring in the first period when Tomas Tatar beat Barons netminder Yann Denis with a wrist shot for his ninth goal of the postseason. Tatar was able to break in behind the defense thanks to a nice pass from defenseman Brett Skinner.
Oklahoma City tied the game in the second period with a power play goal. C.J. Stretch buried home a rebound on the Barons 17th shot of the night.
The Barons took their first lead of the game 1:03 into the third period when Teemu Hartikainen buried a one-timer past Mrazek to make it 2-1 Oklahoma City. Less than two minutes later, Brennan Evans found Mitch Callahan streaking for a breakaway goal to tie the game up at 2-2.
Oklahoma City would take the lead when the puck bounced off Mark Arcobello over an unsuspecting Mrazek and into the net with 12:15 left to play in the third period. Hartikainen added an empty-netter to give the Barons the 4-2 final.
Game Three of the series is set for Wednesday night in Oklahoma City. The Barons are giving away free tickets to anyone who makes a donation to the United Way at the game.