After a 1-1 stalemate through 40 minutes of play, the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds broke the game open in the third period with a pair of empty net goals en route to a 4-2 win over the Kitchener Rangers in front of 4,729 fans at the Essar Centre in Game 2 on Saturday night.
The Greyhounds lead the best-of-seven series, 2-0, with Game 3 scheduled for Monday, April 23 at 7pm at The Aud.
Tickets to Games 3 and 4 in Kitchener are on sale now. Tickets can be purchased online, in person or by calling Centre in the Square (519) 578-1570 -or- 1-800-265-8977, or at the Activa Box Office at The Aud during regular business hours.
More details regarding purchase options are listed below.
For the second straight night it was the Rangers who opened the game’s scoring, as Adam Mascherin scored his seventh of the playoffs just 1:44 in, from Logan Stanley and Rickard Hugg, as the Blueshirts would maintain the one-goal lead into the first intermission.
Shots on goal after the first 20 minutes of play were even at 11-11.
The Rangers thought they had taken a 2-0 lead on a goal by Mike Petizian, but after a lengthy review it was ruled the play was offside breaking into the offensive zone.
Despite not being able to attain the two-goal lead goaltender Mario Culina did his part – and more – to keep momentum in the Rangers favour as the Soo native made an incredible, point-blank save to keep the Greyhounds off the board and the Blueshirts in the lead.
Culina would finish the night surrendering just two goals on 30 Greyhounds shots, making 28 saves. Two hundred feet away Matthew Villalta picked up his second win of the series, allowing two goals on 36 shots by the Rangers.
The Greyhounds finally got on the board at the 11:18 mark of the second period when Morgan Frost made it a tie game, 1-1, from Boris Katchouk and Taylor Raddysh.
Through 40 minutes of play shots favoured the hosts, 20-19.
Katchouk’s first of the game and 12th of the playoffs gave the Hounds their first lead of the night, 2-1, from Jordan Sambrook and Raddysh at 7:50.
With the Rangers awarded a late power play they elected to pull Culina in favour of 6-on-4 play, but Katchouk emphatically buried the puck into an empty net while shorthanded to increase the Soo lead to 3-1.
The Rangers cut the lead to 3-2 on a goal by Stanley with 27 seconds left to play, but again, with the goalie pulled, the Greyhounds potted an empty netter to seal the game, and the win, 4-2.
Final shots on goal were 36-32, Kitchener.
The Rangers were 0-for-4 on the power play, while the Greyhounds were 0-for-1 with the man advantage.
Taylor Raddysh (SSM) (3), Mario Culina (KIT) (2), and Boris Katchouk (SSM) (1) were selected as the Three Stars of the Game.
Logan Stanley, Adam Mascherin, and Logan Brown each wore an “A” and skated as alternates to Rangers’ captain Connor Bunnaman.
Tickets to all Kitchener Rangers home playoff games for Round 3 are $28.00 each for adults, $24.00 for children 12 and under including HST. Tickets to Games 3 and 4 are available in person at the Activa Box Office at The Aud, in person or by calling Centre in the Square (519) 578-1570 -or- 1-800-265-8977, or by purchasing online here.
Fans can also find more information about playoff tickets here.
Join in the conversation on all things Rangers by using #RaiseTheShield and #OHLPlayoffs. You can follow the Rangers on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram at @OHLRangers.
Western Conference Final
(1) Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds vs. (2) Kitchener Rangers
Sault Ste. Marie leads series 2-0
Game 1 – Friday, April 20: Kitchener Rangers 2 at Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 3
Game 2 – Saturday, April 21: Kitchener Rangers 2 at Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 4
Game 3 – Monday, April 23: Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds at Kitchener Rangers – 7pm
Game 4 – Wednesday, April 25: Sault Ste Marie Greyhounds at Kitchener Rangers – 7pm
*Game 5 – Friday, April 27: Kitchener Rangers at Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds – 7:07pm
*Game 6 – Sunday, April 29: Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds at Kitchener Rangers – 2pm
*Game 7 – Monday, April 30: Kitchener Rangers at Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds – 7:07pm
Western Conference Semi-Final
(2) Kitchener Rangers vs. (3) Sarnia Sting
Kitchener leads series 3-2
Game 1 – Friday, April 6: Sarnia Sting 2 at Kitchener Rangers 4
Game 2 – Sunday, April 8: Sarnia Sting 3 at Kitchener Rangers 2 OT
Game 3 – Tuesday, April 10: Kitchener Rangers 1 at Sarnia Sting 4
Game 4 – Thursday, April 12: Kitchener Rangers 5 at Sarnia Sting 3
Game 5 – Friday, April 13: Sarnia Sting 2 at Kitchener Rangers 3 OT
Game 6 – Sunday, April 15: Kitchener Rangers 6 at Sarnia Sting 2
Western Conference Quarter-Final
(2) Kitchener Rangers vs. (7) Guelph Storm
Kitchener wins series 4-2
Game 1 – Friday, March 23: Guelph Storm 2 at Kitchener Rangers 7
Game 2 – Sunday, March 25: Guelph Storm 1 at Kitchener Rangers 2
Game 3 – Tuesday, March 27: Kitchener Rangers 5 at Guelph Storm 7
Game 4 – Wednesday, March 28: Kitchener Rangers 4 at Guelph Storm 6
Game 5 – Friday, March 30: Guelph Storm 2 at Kitchener Rangers 10
Game 6 – Sunday, April 1: Kitchener Rangers 5 at Guelph Storm 2