Saginaw, MI: The Rangers (33-14-5-2) fell to the Spirit (34-16-2-2) at the Dow Event Centre on Saturday. A six-goal second period led to an eventual 8-2 win for the home side.
Graham Dickerson and Serron Noel scored for the Rangers.
Jacob Ingham stopped 26 of 33 shots and took the loss. Lucas Pfeil stopped 14 of 15 in his nearly one period of play.
The Rangers and Spirit both took two penalties apiece during the opening 20 minutes of play but neither team could get it past one another’s goalies and at the end of the first period, it was tied 0-0.
The Spirit doubled up the Rangers in shots 12-6.
Saginaw opened the scoring whilst a man down at 1:14 when DJ Busdeker took a rebound and passed it Damien Giroux (34) who buried it to make it 1-0.
At 8:32, the Spirit padded their lead when a pass in front by Busdeker ended up on the stick of Blade Jenkins (10) who scored on the second of two chances from the crease and it was 2-0.
Just over a minute later, at 9:41, a turnaround shot from the blueline by Arber Xhekaj was tipped in-close by an unmarked Graham Dickerson (2) and that brought the Rangers within one, 2-1.
Isaac Langdon also picked up an assist on the goal.
Ryan Suzuki (14) brought the Spirit lead back to two on the powerplay. A scramble in Ingham’s crease led to the centreman forcing the puck into the net and that made it 3-1.
At 18:16 of the period, Cole Perfetti (34) wired a wrist shot short-side on Ingham and opened up their biggest lead of the night, 4-1.
After the fourth goal, Riley Damiani took an unsportsmanlike penalty. On the ensuing powerplay, a cross-ice pass Perfetto to Cole Coskey (30) resulted in a goal on a wide-open net to make it 5-1 at 19:33.
15-seconds later, Dalton Duhart wrapped around the back of the net and buried it to make it 6-1..
After 40 minutes, the Spirit led in shots 29-14.
Just as the Rangers killed a penalty, Jenkins scored his second of the night to extend the Spirit lead to 7-1.
The Rangers got one back when Francesco Pinelli passed across the faceoff circles to Serron Noel (15) who one-timed it in and it was 7-2.
Liam Hawel picked up the second assist on the goal.
Saginaw brought their lead back to six when Duhart obtained the puck on the forecheck and passed to the faceoff dot for Josh Bloom who fired it past Lucas Pfeil to make it 8-2.
Final shots were 46-28.
The next Rangers home game is on Friday February 21st at 7:30 pm versus the Erie Otters. Their next road game is Monday, February 17 at 2:00 pm versus the Hamilton Bulldogs.
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