When the Kitchener Rangers and Owen Sound Attack last met on Wednesday night, the Rangers rallied from a 4-2, third period deficit to win 5-4; Adam Mascherin scored on the power play in the third period, Joseph Garreffa tallied a modest four-assist effort, and Kole Sherwood scored the game winning goal.
Just 48 hours later, the Rangers (17-9-2-0) trailed 4-2 in the third period, Adam Mascherin scored on the power play in the third period, Joseph Garreffa again registered four assists, and Kole Sherwood scored his second straight game winning goal – this time in overtime – as the Blueshirts earned a thrilling 5-4 win over the Attack (13-10-1-2) in front of 6,946 fans Friday night at The Aud.
The similarities are no doubt improbable, yet equally astounding as the Rangers claim another two points over their Midwest Division rival, and now hold a seven-point lead (36 points) over the Attack and Storm (29).
Luke Richardson (10-7-1-0) got the start in goal for the Rangers and picked up his tenth win of the season, turning aside 35 of 39 shots he faced.
Mack Guzda (5-2-1-1) took the OT loss, surrendering five goals on 43 Rangers shots.
Sherwood finished the night with a pair of goals, tallying his first of the night on the power play in the opening period. Mascherin added a helper to his third period goal, while Logan Stanley also potted a goal and an assist in the win. Greg Meireles rounded out the offence for the Rangers with his second goal in as many games.
Garreffa’s four-point effort now gives him eight points in his last two games, and nine points in his last three. His third point on Friday night was his 100th career OHL point, as he now boasts 101 points in 137 regular season games over two-plus campaigns with Kitchener.
The Rangers got on the board early, as Meireles scored from beneath the Attack goal line to give the home side a 1-0 lead just 43 seconds into the game, unassisted.
The Attack would answer back quickly though, as Mitchell Russell scored his first career OHL goal just 23 seconds later to tie the game, 1-1, from Jonah Gadjovich and Jacob Friend at 1:06.
The visitors took their first lead at 6:18 when Gadjovich capitalized on the Attack’s first power play opportunity of the game, from Aidan Dudas and Sean Durzi, to go up 2-1.
As the period was nearing a close Sherwood would answer with a power play goal of his own – his fourth straight game with a point – to send the game into the first intermission tied 2-2, from Mascherin and Garreffa.
Shots on goal through 20 minutes of play favoured the Rangers, 18-12.
It was a much quieter period on the scoresheet in the middle frame, as the lone tally went to the Attack at 14:09. Maksim Sushko gave the visitors a 3-2 lead, from Dudas and Durzi.
Kitchener led 26-25 in shots in the second intermission.
The Attack hit the ground running to start the third period, as they won the opening draw, skated right into the Rangers end and took a two-goal lead, 4-2, just seven seconds in. It was Sushko’s second goal of the game, which came on the power play from Durzi and Dudas.
But the Rangers weren’t ready to roll over, and they kept pressing throughout the third period.
They crawled to within one with another power play goal from Mascherin, his 15th tally of the season, from Garreffa and Stanley at 8:55 to cut the Attack lead to 4-3.
The game was all squared up at 4-4 just over three minutes later as Stanley notched his seventh goal of the season at 12:11. Garreffa earned the lone helper on the game-tying goal; his third point of the night.
Sherwood’s overtime heroics would come at the 1:25 mark of extra time, securing the 5-4 win for the Rangers with his 12th of the season, Garreffa earning the only assist and his fourth point of the evening.
Shots through regulation were 42-37, Kitchener, and 43-39 at end of game.
The Rangers were 2-for-5 on the power play while the Attack were 2-for-2 with the man advantage.
Aidan Dudas (OS) (3), Joseph Garreffa (KIT) (2), and Kole Sherwood (KIT) (1) were selected as the Three Stars of the Game.
Logan Stanley, Adam Mascherin, and Jake Henderson each wore an “A” and skated as alternates to Rangers’ captain Connor Bunnaman.
The Rangers are back on the road for their only other game this weekend when they take on the Erie Otters at the Erie Insurance Arena on Sunday evening, December 3, at 5pm. They return home for midweek action on Tuesday, December 5 when the team hosts its annual Teddy Bear Toss Game vs. the Windsor Spitfires at 7pm.
Fans are encouraged to bring a new or gently loved stuffed animal to throw onto the ice when the Rangers score their first goal of the game. If possible, kindly bring your furry friends in a clear, zip-locked bag so they stay clean after being thrown to the ice. The stuffed animals will be collected and redistributed to less fortunate members of our community.
Those who would like to be a recipient of bears following the toss should download a recipient form here.
Regular season tickets to all Kitchener Rangers home games are $23.00 each for adults, $19.00 for children 12 and under including HST, and are available in person or by calling the Activa Box Office at The Aud, from Centre in the Square (519) 578-1570 -or- 1-800-265-8977, or by purchasing online.
Join in the conversation on all things Rangers by using #RaiseTheShield. You can follow the Rangers on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram at @OHLRangers.