Comeback effort falls just short for Rangers in Sarnia
Jordan Kyrou scored the game winner and added a pair of assists, as the Sarnia Sting (10-5-1-0) emerged with a 5-3 win over the Kitchener Rangers (10-4-0-1) in front of 2,290 fans at Progressive Auto Sales Arena on Wednesday night.
The loss effectively snapped a four-game Rangers’ win streak, and got the Sting back in the win column after dropping back-to-back games.
The Rangers found themselves down 2-0 in the first period, but battled back to tie the game 2-2 early in the third. A five-goal third period saw the Sting go up 4-2 and 5-3, as the Rangers were unable to muster a lead on the night.
Jeremy Bracco’s season-long point streak continues, however, as the winger picked up the primary assist on a Joseph Garreffa goal which tied the game 2-2. He now has 25 points (9G, 16A) in his 12 games played this season.
Dawson Carty (9-2-0-1) took the loss in goal for Kitchener, stopping 31 of 36 shots. Justin Fazio picked up the win for Sarnia, allowing three goals on 29 shots to improve to 10-2-1-0.
It was a fast-paced first period that elicited limited offensive chances until Brady Hinz banked a rebound just to the right of Carty off an initial shot by Connor Schlichting to give the Sting a 1-0 lead at the 17:20 mark. The goal was reviewed after it was thought to be potentially offside, but the on-ice call would stand.
The Sting would capitalize once more with less than a minute to play in the period, as Franco Sproviero cashed in as the Rangers were caught out of position to go up 2-0, from Kyrou and Louis Latta, at 19:05.
Kitchener would outshoot the hosts 8-6 through the first period of play.
Greg Meireles got the Rangers on the board with his fifth of the season, from Dylan Seitz and Mason Kohn, to cut the Sarnia lead to 2-1 at 4:46 of the second period. It was the lone goal of the period, as the Sting would outshoot the Blueshirts 15-8 in the middle frame for a two-period total of 21-16.
Garreffa tallied his fourth of the season to tie the game 2-2 with a wrist shot from the point at 6:50 of the third period, from Bracco and Connor Bunnaman.
The Sting would respond moments later, however, as Nikita Korostelev notched his 13th of the campaign just 2:14 later, from Sproviero, at 9:04 to regain the lead for Sarnia, 3-2.
Two minutes later Sarnia would strike again, as Kyrou tallied his second point of the night, from Kevin Spinozzi, at 11:05 to make it a 4-2 game.
Darby Llewellyn again brought the Rangers to within one, as his fifth of the season from Jacob Cascagnette and Jake Henderson made it 4-3 at 14:39 of the third period.
To the ire of the Rangers the Sting would waste little time regaining their two-goal lead, as just 25 seconds later Adam Ruzicka made it a 5-3 game, from Kyrou and Kelton Hatcher, at 15:04.
Carty retreated to the Rangers bench in favour of an extra attacker with 1:36 to play and the faceoff in the Sting zone, but the Sarnia would stave off any further Rangers attack as the hosts skated to the 5-3 win.
Final shots were 36-29 in favour of the Sting, including 15-13 Sarnia in the third period.
Kitchener was 0-for-3 on the power play, while Sarnia was 0-for-2 with the man advantage.
With two successful penalty kills, Heffner Lexus Toyota graciously donates another $20 to the Heffner Lexus Toyota PK Tally for a running total this season of $550 in support of Sun Life Financial Kids In Gear.
Meireles (KIT) (3), Sproviero (SAR) (2), and Kyrou (SAR) (1) were selected as the Three Stars of the Game.
Jake Henderson, Darby Llewellyn and Connor Bunnaman each wore “A’s” and skated as alternate captains for the Rangers.
The Rangers are back in action on Friday, November 4, when they host the Flint Firebirds for their final visit to the Aud this season at 7:30pm. They close out the weekend with a trip to Erie to take on the Midwest Division rival Otters at 7pm.
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.