By Dan McCaffery
Cody Trowell is rapidly developing a reputation as a hockey player with a flair for the dramatic.
The Sarnia Legionnaires forward scored a nifty overtime goal Thursday to lead his club to a thrilling 2-1 win over the Strathroy Rockets. For Trowell, it was his second game winner in extra time, with the first coming in a shootout victory over LaSalle a few weeks ago.
But it was more than just one play that made him a standout against Strathroy. He also had an assist and rang a puck off the post.
"That was his best game of the year,” head coach Dan Rose said. He added Trowell's OT marker was “just awesome.”
Indeed it was.
Two minutes into the extra frame, the 19-year-old raced over the blueline, cut right in front of the net and deposited the rubber behind goalie P.J. Bridges from point blank range.
Recalling his heroics afterward, Trowell said he made a play off the glass, saw the goalie was giving him some room and decided to move right in.
As for the outcome, he said it was a character win for the Legionnaires, who are now 5-3 on the season.
Trowell added his performance is improving because he's in better condition than he was at the start of the campaign. “At the start I didn't have the legs. I'm starting to get in better shape.”
Defenceman Mitch Minder got the lone assist on the deciding goal.
Jay Clarke had Sarnia's other goal, which came in the second period when he came out from behind the net and backhanded the puck home. Trowell and Thomas Moxley assisted on the play.
But Nick Boyer tied the contest before the middle frame was over and neither team could find the back of the net again in regulation time.
Clarke almost won it for Sarnia with less than two minutes to play when he broke in alone shorthanded, only to be foiled by Bridges.
In all, the Strathroy goalie made 31 saves, earning second star status in the process.
At the other end, Legionnaire netminder Sean Parker scooped up first star honours with a 38 save performance. One of his stops was the 4,000th save of his Jr. 'B' career.
Rose also had praise for defenceman Curtis Crombeen, who was a tower of strength on the Sarnia blueline. But in truth, that could have been said of all six Legionnaire rearguards.
One of them, Hayden Allen, saved a sure goal in the third stanza. And P.J. Vandervaart broke up a dangerous Rockets trust just before Clarke notched Sarnia's first goal.
Almost 1,100 fans took in the contest at the Brock Street Barn.
The Legionnaires return to action tonight (Friday, Oct. 4) when they travel to St. Marys to face the Lincolns. Their next home game is this coming Tuesday against the Leamington Flyers.