By Dan McCaffery
Josh Kestner scored in overtime to give the Sarnia Legionnaires a big 5-4 win over the hometown LaSalle Vipers in Western Jr. 'B' hockey action Friday.
Goalie Hunter Johnson helped set the play up, passing the puck to Jay Clarke, who fed it to Kestner. Kestner, who was streaking down the right wing, unloaded a drive from the top of the faceoff circle that went through the five-hole.
The winner came with just 12 seconds left on the clock.
Officially, it was Kestner's second goal of the game and his 39th of the season. However, the artful forward said afterward that he didn't think he'd scored a goal awarded to him in the second period. At this writing it wasn't clear which Legionnaire had scored that particular goal.
In any case, the victory was a huge one for Sarnia, lifting them into sole possession of fourth place in the Western Jr. 'B' standings, one point ahead of the London Nationals. Both teams have one game left in the schedule, with the Nats playing in LaSalle Sunday and the Legionnaires traveling to Chatham the same night.
The top four teams in the conference get home ice advantage in the playoffs, which begin next week.
The win brought the Legion record up to 29-17-2.
Sarnia, which was trailing 3-1 at the end of the second period, defeated a Vipers squad that, prior to last night, had lost only four contests at home all winter.
Other Sarnia goals were scored by Ryan Vendramin with two and Brad Campbell with one.
Johnson made 34 saves to register his 12th win since joining the Legionnaires in December. His assist on Kestner's winner was his third helper of the season.