London Knights Down Rangers 5-2
Kitchener, ON.: The Rangers got out to an early lead over Conference-leading Knights but, ultimately, the Knights ended up coming back and winning the midday contest 5-2. Rangers. (18-21-3-0) Knights (29-6-4-1)
Riley Damiani scored for the Rangers as did Jonathan Yantsis, who netted his 30th of the season. A solid defensive performance earned rookie Donovan Sebrango third star honours.
FULL GAME REPORT
The game started with the Knights registering six shots to the Rangers’ zero but it was the Blueshirts who struck first against the Midwest division leaders.
At 3:46 of the opening period, Alex Turko took a tripping penalty which put the Knights down a man for two minutes. On the ensuing powerplay, a pass from Joseph Garreffa and an attempt on goal by Greg Meireles ended up on the stick of Jonathan Yantsis who scored his 30th goal of the season on Kitchener’s first shot. 1-0.
Each team traded three penalties and Lucas Pfeil was perfect through 20 minutes of play despite the Rangers getting outshot 14-5. It remained 1-0.
The Knights were finally able to figure out Pfeil at 3:22 of the middle frame. Good puck movement from Kevin Hancock and Josh Nelson led to a pass onto the stick of Antonio Stranges who shot it past a sprawling Pfeil to tie it up, 1-1.
London took the lead at 5:59 when Nathan Dunkley, parked in front of the net, deked around Pfeil to give the Knights their first lead, 2-1.
Paul Cotter took a hooking penalty at 6:39 that gave the Rangers their fourth powerplay of the game. Unfortunately for the home side, Billy Moskal stripped a Rangers defender of the puck at the blueline, which led to a breakaway and a shorthanded goal for the Knights to put them up 3-1.
Riley Damiani, after a Rickard Hugg shot rebounded off Joseph Raaymakers at the top of his crease, was able to tap in his 16th of the season st 11:57. Isaac Langdon also earned an assist on the goal and that made it 3-2.
The Knights restored their two-goal advantage at 14:42 on Dunkley’s second goal of the game. A shot came off the pads of Pfeil and onto the stick of Dunkley who buried his 20th of the season to make it 4-2.
The second period would end with the Knights leading in shots 33-17.
Mike Petizian took a high sticking penalty at 8:28 of the 3rd period and on the powerplay, At 10:05, Liam Foudy netted his 18th of the season to extend the Knights lead to three, 5-2.
Pfeil stopped all seven shots against him in the third period.
The final shots on goal were 39-27 in favour of London.
The Rangers next home game is on Friday, January 18 at 7:30 pm versus the Windsor Spitfires. The next road game for Kitchener is on Sunday, January 27 at 2:07 pm versus the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds.
Rangers Down Guelph Storm With Dramatic OT WIN
Kitchener, ON: The Highway 7 rivalry saw another classic chapter unfold at The Aud on Friday night as the Guelph Storm (21-12-4-4) lost to the Rangers (18-20-3-0)4-3 in overtime on a goal by Riley Damiani, the game’s first star.
Joseph Garreffa earned three assists on the night, good enough for second-star honours and Luke Richardson had himself an outstanding night stopping 29 of 32 shots in the win.
FULL GAME REPORT
The Storm opened up the scoring in this rendition of the Highway 7 Rivarly. Liam Hawel, shortly after serving two minutes for a head-checking penalty, netted his 21st goal of the season on an assist from Sean Durzi to put Guelph up 1-0 at 10:07 of the first period.
The remaining half-period was a stalemate for both sides. Kitchener went into the intermission with a slight lead in shots, 11-9.
Guelph came out firing to start the second period. MacKenzie Entwhistle netted his 17th of the season on assists by Nick Suzuki and Isaac Ratcliffe and at 39 seconds of the middle frame, it was 2-0 for the visitors.
Domenico Commisso took a hooking penalty at 5:34 that gave the Rangers their second powerplay of the night. After a flurry of chances that could’ve seen the Rangers score, it was Jonathan Yantsis, on his 29th goal of the season, who broke the shutout for Nico Daws. The goal was assisted by Greg Meireles and Joseph Garreffa to bring the game to 2-1.
As the second period was winding down, and after a number of quality chances by the Rangers, Rickard Hugg, on an unassisted backhand shot, beat Daws for his 16th goal of the season to bring the game to parity, 2-2.
Heading into the second intermission, Kitchener was outshooting Guelph 25-22.
At 4:06 of the third period a Garreffa shot from between the middle-top of the circles ended up on the stick of Isaac Langdon. Langdon was in tight on Daws and capitalized on the opportunity to score his fourth goal of the season and give the Rangers their first lead of the game, 3-2.
Relentless pressure from the Storm late in the period paid off for the maroon and white when Markus Phillips, from behind Luke Richardson’s net, passed in front to Isaac Ratcliffe who scored his 27th of the season to make it 3-3.
The period would end in a deadlock and send the game to overtime with the Rangers leading in shots 34-32.
Just 13 seconds into overtime, Riley Damiani, on a breakaway, deked around Daws and buried his 15th of the season to give Kitchener the win 4-3.
The final shots were 35-32 for Kitchener.