The Owen Sound Attack (26-13-1-0) won their 10th consecutive game on Sunday afternoon in front of 2,873 fans at the Harry Lumley Bayshore Community Centre, but it came at the hands of the Kitchener Rangers (22-13-2-1).
The Attack were successful in minimizing the shots on goal by the Rangers, who mustered four in the first period, five in the second and nine in the third.
As has been the case for the majority of the Rangers’ and Attack’s meetings this season, Sunday was another chippy affair which saw eleven minor penalties called over the span of the game.
Connor Bunnaman (PPG) and Joseph Garreffa were the goal scorers for Kitchener, who twice came back to even the score but surrendered the eventual game winner near the tail end of the second period.
Luke Opilka (6-6-1-0) took the loss in goal for the Rangers, making 24 saves. Michael McNiven (21-7-1-0) picked up the win for the Attack, allowing two goals on 18 shots.
Santino Centorame opened the game’s scoring for the Attack, as his second of the season gave the hosts a 1-0 lead from Kevin Hancock and Nick Suzuki at 4:36.
McNiven missed just under seven minutes of game time near the eight-minute mark of the first period after appearing to experience some discomfort after making a save. Emanuel Vella wasn’t tested in relief, and McNiven returned to the Attack crease with just over five minutes to play in the opening frame.
Centorame’s marker was the lone goal of the first period, which saw Owen Sound outshoot Kitchener 12-4.
Bunnaman would square things up, 1-1, with his 18th of the season, a power play goal from Adam Mascherin at 3:17 of the second period.
The stalemate was short lived, however, as Markus Phillips made it 2-1 Owen Sound less than a minute later, from Zachary Roberts and Justin Brack at 4:10.
Just over a minute after the Attack took the lead the Rangers would again tie the game, as Joseph Garreffa’s 12th of the season made it 2-2, unassisted, at 5:23.
With the Rangers shorthanded and another delayed penalty called, the Attack would again take the lead with a 6-on-4 man advantage as Kevin Hancock made it 3-2 Owen Sound, assisted by Petrus Palmu and Suzuki at 14:45.
Shots on goal in the second period were 9-5 Attack for a two-period total of 21-9 Owen Sound.
The Attack would take their first two-goal lead of the game just under five minutes into the third period as Jacob Friend registered another power play goal for the hosts, 4-2, from Ethan Szypula and Sean Durzi, at 4:54.
With Opilka on the Rangers bench in favour of an extra attacker, Matt Schmalz iced the game for the Attack, 5-2, from Matthew Struthers at 18:42 of the third.
Final shots on goal were 30-18 Owen Sound, including 9-9 in the final frame.
Kitchener would finish 1-for-5 on the power play, while Owen Sound was 2-for-6 on the man advantage.
With four successful penalty kills, Heffner Lexus Toyota graciously donates another $40 to the Heffner Lexus Toyota PK Tally for a running total this season of $1,270 in support of Sun Life Financial Kids in Gear.
Joseph Garreffa (KIT) (3), Jacob Friend (OS) (2) and Kevin Hancock (OS) (1) were selected as the Three Stars of the Game.
Dylan Di Perna and Darby Llewellyn each wore an “A” and skated as alternates to Rangers captain Frank Hora.
The Rangers are on the road in Erie (Jan. 10) and Windsor (Jan. 12) before returning back home to the Aud to host the Barrie Colts for the lone time this season on Friday, January 13th at 7:30pm.
Regular season tickets to Kitchener Rangers home games are $22.50 each for adults, $18.50 for children 12 and under, including HST and are available in person or by calling the Kitchener Memorial Auditorium Box Office or Centre in the Square (519) 578-1570 -or- 1-800-265-8977, or by purchasing online.