Birds Force OT But Fall in Kingston, 4-3
KINGSTON, Ont. – Braeden Kressler and Gavin Hayes each had a goal and an assist and Flint tied the game in the third period to force overtime but the Kingston Frontenacs beat the Firebirds in OT, 4-3, on Sunday afternoon at Leon’s Centre.
With the Birds trailing, 3-2, in the third period Flint was granted a power play. Coulson Pitre hit Kressler who gained the zone and skated to the left circle. He loaded up a snap shot and snuck it through the short side of Mason Vaccari, evening the score at three.
The game remained knotted at three through the remainder of regulation and transitioned into overtime. Following a Flint shot attempt that sailed wide, Kingston’s Jacob Holmes sent a stretch pass to Gabriel Frasca who charged into the attacking zone. Frasca snapped a shot that got through Jacob Brown and the Frontenacs took the extra point, 4-3.
Kingston opened the scoring in the first period following a Firebirds turnover along their own blue line. Christopher Thibodeau flicked a pass to Luke McNamara on the back post. He one-touched it across the crease for Adam Cavallin, who sent it home and gave Kingston a 1-0 lead.
Flint answered and tied the game later in the period with a power play strike. Kressler took a shot from the point that Mason Vaccari stopped but the rebound found Zacharie Giroux. Giroux send a backhanded pass toward Hayes who was alone on the opposite side. Hayes slung a wrist shot home and the score was 1-1.
The Firebirds then grabbed the lead later in the first when Reed Gee took a wrist shot that caromed off a Frontenac stick. It then changed direction a second time as Nathan Aspinall stuck his stick out and deflected it past Vaccari to make it 2-1 Flint.
Kingston took the lead with a pair of second period goals. First, Matthew Soto flipped a wrist shot high past Brown. Then, Linus Hemstrom was fed crashing the net for a wrist shot that he buried and the score was 3-2.
Hayes scored his team-leading 19th goal of the season and he extended his point streak to seven games, Brown made 26 saves on 30 shots and Flint earned a point for the third consecutive game. The Firebirds moved to 13-11-2-1 with the overtime loss while Kingston improved to 12-13-1-0.
Flint will take the ice at home on Saturday night against the Saginaw Spirit. The team will be wearing specialty Christmas-inspired jerseys that will be auctioned off live postgame, with proceeds benefitting the Old Newsboys of Flint. Puck drop at the Dort Financial Center is scheduled for 7 p.m.