Saturday Highlights: Spirit resurrect in epic comeback
SAGINAW 7 – SARNIA 6 – OT
The Saginaw Spirit scored seven unanswered goals, erasing a 6-0 deficit on home ice to defeat the CHL’s top-ranked Sarnia Sting 7-6 in overtime. Veteran forward Cole Coskey (14) completed the comeback, scoring in a third straight game with 37 seconds left in overtime as the Spirit pulled off one of the biggest comebacks in recent memory. Cameron Lamour earned the win with 20 saves in relief while other Saginaw goals came from DJ Busdeker (5), Duncan Penman (2), Blade Jenkins (12), Ryan Stepien (3), Brady Gilmour (6) and Damien Giroux (10). Saginaw scored six times in under 20 minutes to tie the score and force overtime before Coskey finished the job and helped the Spirit improve to 13-10-3-0. Los Angeles Kings prospect Drake Rymsha (14, 15, 16) had a natural hat-trick overshadowed in the loss while other Sting goals came from Anthony Salinitri (11), Hugo Leufvenius (11) and Franco Sproviero (4). Saginaw outshot Sarnia 41-32 as the Spirit have won seven of their last 10. Sarnia falls to 21-5-2-0 with a second straight loss.
OTTAWA 4 – BARRIE 3
The Ottawa 67’s trailed for most of the game before Tye Felhaber (6) knotted the score at three midway through the third, setting the stage for rookie defenceman Lucas Peric (2) to score the game winner from a low percentage angle with just 2:02 left in the third period. The 67’s defeated the visiting Barrie Colts 4-3 on Sportsnet’s CHL Saturday Showcase, improving to 14-12-1-1 on the season. Ottawa outshot Barrie 35-24 as Mathieu Foget (11) also scored while rookie Graeme Clarke (9) found the back of the net in a fourth straight game. Ben Hawerchuk (6), Jason Willms (14) and Ryan Suzuki (4) scored for the Colts while TJ Fergus had two assists. Barrie falls to 15-8-2-1, leading the Central Division by two points over second place Niagara.
GUELPH 6 – OWEN SOUND 5 – SO
A back-and-forth affair between two Midwest Division foes saw the Guelph Storm take the extra point behind Barret Kirwin’s (5, 6, 7) first OHL hat-trick. Kirwin completed the trio with just 16 seconds left in regulation, forcing an eventual shootout where Isaac Ratcliffe would score the lone marker and Anthony Popovich would stop all three shooters he faced in the 6-5 Guelph victory. Ratcliffe (13) opened the scoring for Guelph while Dmitri Samorukov (3) also found the back of the net while Popovich turned away 48 shots on the night. The Storm was outshot 53-36 as the Attack picked up a point despite suffering their fifth straight loss. Vancouver Canucks prospect Jonah Gadjovich (13, 14) scored twice for Owen Sound while extending his current point streak to nine games. Sean Durzi (13), Matthew Struthers (7) and Daylon Groulx (4) also found the twine for the Bears while Ethan Szypula had two assists. Owen Sound falls to 13-10-1-3, one point behind second place Guelph in the division.
LONDON 3 – NORTH BAY 2 – OT
St. Louis Blues prospect Robert Thomas (17) finished off a give-and-go with Sam Miletic with 33 seconds left in overtime as the London Knights defeated the visiting North Bay Battalion 3-2 for head coach Dale Hunter’s 700th OHL victory. Cliff Pu (13) brought down the bears on Teddy Bear Toss Night 9:43 into the first period. Alex Formenton (9) also scored for London while Joseph Raaymakers made 21 saves. Thomas finished the night with a goal and two assists to extend his current point streak to eight games while Miletic and blueliner Evan Bouchard both had two helpers. Brett McKenzie (8) and Kyle Potts (5) responded with goals for the Battalion while goaltender Christian Propp made 27 saves in his first action since Oct. 26th. The Knights outshot the Battalion 30-23 and went 2-for-5 on the power play. The Knights have won seven of their past 10 and are now 13-12-2-0 while North Bay sits at 9-15-4-0.
NIAGARA 6 – FLINT 4
The Niagara IceDogs skated to their fourth straight win as Bradey Johnson had a third straight two-goal game, leading his club past the Flint Firebirds 6-4 on the road. Danial Singer (9, 10) also scored twice while Matthew Philip (6) and Akil Thomas (7) also capitalized as the IceDogs pulled to within two points of first place Barrie in the Central with a 13-8-3-2 record. C.J. Clarke (4) launched the teddy bears 10:13 into the first period while other Firebirds goals came in the third period with Toronto Maple Leafs prospect Nicolas Mattinen (4, 5) scoring twice along with Jack Wismer’s (1) first OHL goal. Flint falls to 8-17-2-0.
WINDSOR 3 – OSHAWA 0
Vancouver Canucks prospect Michael DiPietro earned his 10th career shutout with a 38-save blanking of the visiting Oshawa Generals. The Windsor Spitfires earned their third straight win, improving to 15-10-1-0 as Kirill Kozhevnikov (1), Cole Purboo (8) and Nathan Staios (2) all scored. The Spits won despite being outshot 38-25 by the visiting Generals who had a three-game winning streak halted. Oshawa is 12-14-2-0 on the season.