Curtis Dickson scored his seventh goal of the game 4:13 into overtime to lift the Calgary Roughnecks (11-6) to a 14-13 road victory over the Edmonton Rush (15-2).
There was nothing left to play for as far as playoff positioning, but the Calgary Roughnecks treated the game like a playoff matchup.
And behind a seven-goal effort including the overtime game-winner from Curtis Dickson, the Roughnecks edged the Edmonton Rush 14-13 in front of 8,756 fans at Rexall Place in Edmonton on Saturday night.
"It was a confidence-builder for sure," said Dickson. "The Rush are the cream of the crop in the league right now so it was important for us to get this win. If we meet them in the playoffs, we're going to have to win here so we needed to know we could beat them in their home."
Dickson's one-man wrecking crew performance spoiled the Rush's opportunity of completing a season sweep over their arch rivals. The Rush won all three previous regular-season games against the Roughnecks, having never won more than two games in one season against Calgary in any prior campaign. Calgary's win also ended Edmonton's hopes of going a perfect 8-0 on their home turf this season.
"It was a psyche thing," noted Calgary head coach Curt Malawsky. "We had a playoff mindset coming into the game and it was important for us to come out and compete. And it was a fitting ending for it to go to OT. The fans got their money's worth."
The Rush had the game locked up twice in the fourth quarter. With the game tied 9-9 after three quarters, Curtis Knight gave Edmonton the lead, and then Zack Greer and Jeff Cornwall scored 16 seconds apart to put the Rush up 12-9. But the Roughnecks responded with three goals of their own coming in exactly one minute. Dickson connected for his sixth of the game - and third power-play marker - and Shawn Evans followed 31 seconds after that. Daryl Veltman then scored to pull Calgary even at 12-12.
Only 59 seconds later, though, Edmonton regained the lead on a tidy effort in tight by Chris Corbeil, and the captain's hat trick goal held until the final minute of regulation. Evans counted his hat trick goal with 47 seconds left with a shot that somehow managed to trickle through the legs of Rush goalie Aaron Bold.
Evans goal - his third of the game - came mere moments after some controversy as the entire Rush bench erupted believing that Dane Dobbie had committed an over-and-back violation. Without a call on the play, the Roughnecks got the equalizer and set the stage for the final bit of magic from Dickson.
"He's a special player and he was dialed in," said Corbeil of Dickson's performance. "But the bigger concern than his seven goals is the 14 they put up. We have to lower that."
In the opening quarter, Mark Matthews' second of the game gave the Rush a 3-1 lead but Dobbie's goal with three seconds remaining to pull Calgary to within one at 4-3.
Zack Greer's goal just seven second into the second quarter restored Edmonton's two-goal cushion but
that advantage didn't last long as the Roughnecks dominated the second frame. Curtis Dickson scored three goals in the second, his first coming on a breakaway. Matthews got his hat trick goal to make it 6-5 for the Rush, but Dickson responded with a pair just 1:02 apart including a power-play marker to give Calgary a 7-6 lead at halftime.
Dickson added two more to his count in the third including another power-play marker but the Rush responded with a pair of goals from Robert Church coming 47 seconds apart. Corbeil notched his second - another breakaway goal - pulling the Rush even 9-9 before the end of the third.
Matthews finished with a hat trick for the Rush, while Greer notched a pair. Jarrett Davis also scored for Edmonton which got 33 saves from Bold.
Geoff Snider and Jeff Shattler had Calgary's other goals with Dobbie and Veltman chipping in six assists each. Scigliano made his first start of the season and mustered 28 saves including a handful of highlight-reel stops before being injured. Mike Poulin went the rest of way and allowed just one goal on 11 shots.
The Rush wrap up their regular season next Friday night as they host the Vancouver Stealth. One night later the Roughnecks complete their regular season in Vancouver.
Three Stars of the Game as selected by the media:
1) Curtis Dickson
2) Chris Corbeil
3) Frankie Scigliano