Nick Magyar scored twice, including the game-winner, as the Kitchener Rangers defeated the Guelph Storm 6-5 on Monday afternoon. Rookie Connor Bunnaman scored his first career OHL goal in the victory, while fellow freshman Adam Mascherin set up three goals for the Rangers.
Team scoring leader Pius Suter opened the scoring for the Storm, picking up a rebound in front of the Rangers net and squeezing a shot between the pads of Matthew Greenfield. His fifth goal of the season was assisted by Tyler Bertuzzi and defenceman Ben Harpur.
Two quick goals put Kitchener ahead 2-1 near the midway point of the first period. Import forward Gustaf Franzen stretched to keep the puck in the offensive zone and fired a shot on goal that was turned aside by Guelph’s Matthew Mancina. Sophomore forward Nick Magyar was on the doorstep, however, and batted his second chance into the net past the goalie’s outstretched glove. First year forward Adam Mascherin also earned an assist on Magyar’s first goal of the season.
Less than a minute later, rookie Connor Bunnaman’s first career Ontario Hockey League marker lifted the Rangers to their first lead of the afternoon. The team’s second-round pick in the 2014 Priority Selection, Bunnaman beat Mancina glove hand to collect his landmark tally. Mike Davies picked up a point with an assist on the play.
Guelph regained its one goal lead with a pair of shorthanded breakaway goals. First team captain Jason Dickinson took advantage when a Rangers defender tripped at the blueline, stealing the puck and carrying it the length of the ice before lifting a shot over the shoulder of Greenfield. The unassisted tally was the Dallas Stars prospect’s third of the year.
With just over five minutes to play in the frame, Suter notched his second goal of the game, muscling his way to the front of the Rangers net and sliding the puck behind the netminder’s right skate. The Swiss import has five goals in five games to start the season, after notching nine in 2013-14.
Third-year winger Justin Bailey scored with less than 30 seconds remaining, sending the teams into intermission knotted at 3-3. The Buffalo Sabres prospect settled the puck the right of Mancina and snapped a sharp angle shot into the top corner of the net to record his fourth goal in two games. Bailey is the team’s scoring leader with seven goals and four helpers, and has at least one point in each of the six games he’s played this season. Darby Llewellyn and Logan Schmidt were credited with the helpers on the goal at 19:36.
The Storm led shots on goal 15-13 after 20 minutes.
Captain Liam Maaskant’s first goal of the season put Kitchener back on top early in the second period. With the team’s playing 4-on-4, Maaskant crept in from the blueline and fired a long shot high over the blocker of Mancina. The overage rearguard’s tally was his first since joining the Rangers in an August trade with the Barrie Colts, and his second point in as many games. Veteran forward Brandon Robinson earned the lone assist on the play.
Later in the period, Guelph took advantage of a 4-on-4 situation to pull even at four goals apiece. Centre Tyler Boston notched the game-tying goal, pushing a shot past the paddle of Greenfield to record the first of his OHL career. Overager Stephen Pierog picked up a helper on the play.
The Rangers added a pair late in the period to take a 6-4 lead into the dressing room. With less than four minutes to play and Kitchener on the man-advantage, Russian blueliner Dmitrii Sergeev picked up a pass from Mascherin and moved into the faceoff dot to the right of the Guelph net. His shot found the top corner of the net, above Mancina’s glove, giving him a pair of goals on the season.
With 2:08 to play, Magyar’s second of the game chased Mancina from the game. Max Iafrate’s shot bounced off the goaltender and landed in the blue paint, allowing the Mentor, OH native to charge the net and knock it over the goal line. Magyar was a fourth round pick of the Colorado Avalanche in the 2014 Entry Draft, and led all Rangers in scoring last season. Freshman Adam Mascherin earned his third assist of the night on the play.
The Storm sent veteran goaltender Justin Nichols to the net for the remainder of the contest.
Each team fired nine shots on goal in the second period.
A two-man power play opportunity eight minutes into the final frame opened the door for the Storm, who closed the gap to a single goal. Harpur potted his second of the year, a heavy shot from the slot that soared over Greenfield’s shoulder. The power play marker was assisted by Dickinson and Zac Leslie.
Guelph could not complete the third-period comeback, however, and the Rangers held on to a 6-5 victory. The Storm led shots on goal 7-5 in the third and finished with a 31-27 overall advantage on the shot clock.
1. GUE P. Suter, (5) (T. Bertuzzi, B. Harpur), 8:55
1. KIT N. Magyar, (1) (G. Franzen, A. Mascherin), 10:31
1. KIT C. Bunnaman, (1) (M. Davies), 11:22
1. GUE J. Dickinson, (3) (unassisted), 12:52 (SH)
1. GUE P. Suter, (6) (unassisted), 14:49 (SH)
1. KIT J. Bailey, (7) (D. Llewellyn, L. Schmidt), 19:36 (PP)
2. KIT L. Maaskant, (1) (B. Robinson), 3:41
2. GUE T. Boston, (1) (S. Pierog), 14:16
2. KIT D. Sergeev, (2) (A. Mascherin), 16:41 (PP)
2. KIT N. Magyar, (2) (M. Iafrate, A. Mascherin), 17:52
3. GUE B. Harpur, (2) (J. Dickinson, Z. Leslie), 8:23 (PP)
1. KIT – 20 Nick Magyar
2. GUE – 11 Jason Dickinson
3. KIT – 23 Adam Mascherin
The Rangers welcome the Barrie Colts to the Kitchener Memorial Auditorium on Friday, October 17 at 7:30pm. Tickets to all Kitchener Rangers home games are now available by phone at 519-578-1570 or 1-800-265-8977, via the internet at www.centre-square.com or in person at the Centre In the Square Box Office or the Kitchener Auditorium Box Office.