Story and Photos By DAVE PAUL
The Sarnia Sting scored once in the third period, then got the winner in overtime, to pick up another win over the Saginaw Spirit, Friday, at RBC Centre.
The 2-1 victory was the Sting's fourth win of the season over the Spirit (out of nine total wins).
Saginaw opened the scoring just 25 seconds into the first period when a Jimmy Lodge shot beat Sting goalie Taylor Dupuis. It was the only goal that Dupuis -- the first star of the game -- would allow. He was outstanding in stopping 37 of 38 shots, while the Sting fired 33 shots on Saginaw goalie Nikita Serebryakov.
The Spirit's 1-0 lead held up until the 5:50 mark of the third period when Nick Latta evened the score. The Sting did some quick passing off of a faceoff win in the Saginaw zone to set up Latta for the tally.
Both teams had good chances to get the go-ahead goal in the third but the goalies were unbeatable. Saginaw's Nick Moutrey was stoned by Dupuis while Cody Payne rang a shot off the crossbar. At the other end, Serebryakov made good stops on Davis Brown -- taking the place of suspended Bryan Moore on the Sting's top line -- and Nikolay Goldobin.
But the Sting got a 4-on-3 power play in overtime and Goldobin ended the game shortly thereafter, picking the far corner from in close against Serebryakov.
Sting coach Trevor Letwowski said he was "happy with the entire game" his team played, but added he "thought our third period was outstanding. It was an exciting game (and) it's a great win for us."
Letowski said he was pleased with Brown's debut on the top line. The small, speedy winger, who has been snake-bitten around the net for much of this season, picked up an assist on Latta's goal.
"I thought it was a good start for him," said Letowksi. "It's not set in stone," that the team will continue to use him as Moore's replacement, alongside Goldobin and Latta, but Letowski added Brown, "played well" and "worked hard."
With 19 points on the season, the Sting now find themselves five points behind Plymouth for the eighth seed -- and final playoff spot -- in the Western Conference.
Sarnia will play a pair of games against the Windsor Spitfires to wrap up the weekend. The Sting will travel to Windsor on Saturday night and host the Spitfires in a Sunday afternoon game (4 p.m.) at RBC Centre.