It was a fitting Farewell to the Joe on Sunday.
Sean Day grew up watching the Detroit Red Wings at Joe Louis Arena. The New York Rangers prospect stepped up in the building’s final OHL game, writing his name in the record books to become the fourth Windsor Spitfires player and first defender in franchise history to record a hat-trick in the iconic venue.
A native of Rochester, Michigan, Day (8 ,9, 10) led the Spitfires back from a 2-0 deficit, scoring power play goals 21 seconds apart inside the final five minutes of the third period before lifting Windsor to a 3-2 victory 1:26 into the extra frame.
Day’s natural hat-trick is the first regular season trio at The Joe since January 12, 1995 when Detroit’s Tom Buckley scored three times in a 7-2 win over the Owen Sound Platers. He joins fellow Spitfires in Steve Gibson (5-2 W, Dec. 20, 1991), Craig Lutes (12-5 L, Mar. 17, 1993) and Bill Bowler (11-4 W, Oct. 16, 1994) in the ranks of Windsor players to accomplish the feat.
Anaheim Ducks prospect Julius Nattinen finished the afternoon with three assists as the Spits went 2-for-3 on the power play and climbed to 18-5-4-0 on the season before a crowd of 3,189.
The Spitfires outshot Saginaw 43-21 as Spirit netminder Evan Cormier turned aside 40 shots in the loss. Matthew Kreis (4) and Red Wings prospect Filip Hronek (4) scored goals for Saginaw.
The 130th and final regular season OHL contest at Joe Louis Arena sees the Windsor Spitfires improve their all-time regular season record at The Joe to 7-9-1 over 17 games.
READ MORE: Big moments, key dates, top performers in OHL’s history at ‘The Joe’.
(Photos by Keith Dotson / OHL Pucks & Stripes)