By Dan McCaffery
The Sarnia Legionnaires overcame a two-goal deficit Saturday to post a 3-2 road win over the Strathroy Rockets in Western Jr. 'B' hockey action.
Bobby King's shorthanded tally in the second period may have been the turning point.
The Legion crew was trailing 2-0 when King and Jordan Fogarty roared down the ice on a two-on-one break.
"Fogarty worked hard to get the puck out of our zone, I had the easy part,” a modest King said afterward. “All I had to do was redirect his pass.”
It was King's eighth goal of the season, a total the defensive-minded forward said he's happy with. “I'll do whatever I can to help out the team, the team comes first,” he said.
The tally, coming with Sarnia killing off a four-minute penalty, sent the Legionnaires into the dressing room down by just one goal.
Josh Kestner rifled home a power play marker early in the third frame and Jay Clarke got the winner, deflecting in a shot just seconds after the game's only fight, which saw Sarnia's P.J. Vandervaart scrap with Jack Van Boekel.
Kestner now has a team-leading 30 goals on the season, while Clarke has 15.
Assists on Sarnia's three goals went to Davis Boyer, with two, and Clarke and Fogarty with one each.
With the victory the Legionnaires moved to within three points of Strathroy and London, who share fourth place in the nine-team Western Ontario Hockey Conference standings.
They also improved their record to 20-15-1 and clinched a berth in the post season.
The top four clubs get home ice advantage in the playoffs.
Sarnia coach Dan Rose said, “We grinded out the win. We competed hard in the second and third periods. I was proud of the boys, they kept battling hard when they were down 2-0.”
Rose said fourth place is a realistic objective for the Legionnaires, who have won three games in a row. “Right now we want to get fourth,” he said. “We've got to win a lot of games (down the stretch) but that road win was huge.”
Hunter Johnson made 28 saves in the Sarnia net to get his fourth win since joining the team a few weeks ago.
Brett Dalton had both Strathroy goals.
The Legionnaires fired 32 shots on losing goalie Jack Moylan.
Sarnia, which has two games in hand on the Rockets, returns to action next Thursday when it hosts London at the Brock Street Barn. The puck drop is set for 7:10 p.m.