Storm claim first win in Highway 7 rivalry
Waterloo native Nate Schnarr scored twice and goaltender Anthony Popovich made 29 saves as the Guelph Storm (3-2-0-1) skated to a 5-2 win over the Kitchener Rangers (4-2-1-0) in front of 3,533 fans at the Sleeman Centre on Saturday afternoon.
Luke Richardson (0-2-1-0) suffered the loss in goal for the Rangers, surrendering four goals on 31 shots.
Popovich sees his line improve to (3-2-0-1), the goaltender of record in all of the Storm’s six games so far this season.
Adam Liška (1G, 1A) and Rickard Hugg (2A) led the way on the scoresheet for the Rangers, notching the first two-point games of their Ontario Hockey League careers. Logan Stanley potted the other Rangers goal on the afternoon.
The Storm took the lead on the first shot of the game, as Schnarr scored 15 seconds into the game, from James McEwan and Zach Poirier to give Guelph an early 1-0 lead.
Schnarr struck again for the Storm as a Rangers penalty expired, giving the home team a 2-0 lead at 6:14, assisted by Ryan Merkley and Poirier, to round out first period scoring.
The Storm led the shot clock, 12-5, through the first 20 minutes of play.
They extended their lead to 3-0 at the 5:16 mark of the second period, as McEwan beat Richardson with a shot from the top of the circle, assisted by Mark Woolley and Mark Shoemaker.
Liška scored his second of the season to get the Rangers on the board in the latter moments of the second, beating Popovich at 16:20, assisted by Hugg.
Shots after 40 minutes of play favoured the Storm, 22-19.
In the third period Liška found Logan Stanley at the side of the net, who had a wide open cage and found the back of the net, cutting the Storm lead to 3-2 at 8:23 with Hugg picking up the secondary assist.
But it was as close as the Rangers would come to closing the gap, as Cedric Ralph restored the two-goal lead for the Storm at 14:42, from Keegan Stevenson and Barret Kirwin.
Guelph would ice the game with an empty net goal by Cam Hillis, his first Ontario Hockey League goal, with 1:26 to play from Merkley and Isaac Ratcliffe.
Third period shots on goal were 12-10 Kitchener for a game total of 32-21 favouring the Blueshirts.
Each team found themselves scoreless on the power play; the Rangers going 0-for-5, while the Storm were 0-for-3.
Liška (KIT) (3), McEwan (GUE) (2), and Schnarr (GUE) (1) were selected as the Three Stars of the Game.
Stanley, Adam Mascherin, and Doug Blaisdell each wore an “A” and skated as alternates to Rangers’ captain Connor Bunnaman.
The Rangers close out the long weekend on Monday afternoon when they host the Owen Sound Attack for a 2pm Thanksgiving matinee at The Aud.
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.
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