Adam Mascherin tallied his 25th goal of the season and Mason Kohn notched the game winner in the third period as the Kitchener Rangers (34-8-4-0) defeated the Saginaw Spirit (20-24-2-2) 2-1 in front of 5,483 fans at the Dow Event Centre on Saturday night.
Mascherin opened the game’s scoring at 19:24 of the first period on the power play from Jeremy Bracco and Miles Liberati. It would be the lone goal of the opening frame, as the visiting Blueshirts outshot the Spirit 15-11 through 20 minutes of play.
After a scoreless second period, the Rangers led the Spirit in shots 19-18, but at 5:09 of the third, Blake Clarke evened the scoring for the Spirit, making it a 1-1 game.
Kohn’s 14th of the season from Bunnaman and Llewellyn at 16:10 was the difference maker, as the Rangers would skate to their fourth straight win.
Luke Opilka earned his 23rd win of the season (23-5-2-0), making 27 of 28 saves. Evan Cormier took the loss for the Spirit, stopping 28 of 30 shots he faced.
The Rangers were 1-for-3 with the man advantage, while the Spirit were denied on their four attempts on the power play.
Rangers head coach Mike Van Ryn had praise for his club in the midst of their tough stretch of three games in two and a half days.
“I thought we had a lot of good effort out of a lot of our guys tonight. We took on a good opponent and it was good to see how our guys responded to that.”
When asked about Kohn’s game winner, the coach replied without hesitation.
“It was good to see him get rewarded. He gets slotted into different lines and makes himself an effective player no matter what line he’s on. He got rewarded for his effort tonight and I’m proud of him for that.”
Opilka (3), Cormier (2) and Kohn (1) were chosen as the Three Stars of the Game.
Gustaf Franzen, Frank Hora and Brandon Robinson each wore ‘A’s and skated as alternates to captain Ryan MacInnis.
The Rangers finish the weekend tomorrow in Sault Ste. Marie when they face the Greyhounds at 2:07pm.
Tickets for the Rangers next home game, or any other future Rangers home games are available online at kitchenerrangers.com, by calling Centre in the Square, or through The Aud Box Office.