Steelheads hold off Sting 3-2 on Sunday
By Carl Chimenti
It was the first meeting of an Eastern Conference opponent in more than two years and the Sarnia Sting did everything they could, but in the end fell short by a 3-2 score Sunday afternoon at the Paramount Fine Foods Centre, in Mississauga, Ontario.
Steelheads rookie goaltender Ryerson Leenders, stood on his head to steal his first career Ontario Hockey League win, in just his second start this season. The 16-year old, stopped all but two of Sarnia’s 35 shots, many of the spectacular highlight reel variety and for his effort was named first star of the game.
The Sting came out flying from the drop of the puck and continued to out play Mississauga till the very end. Ben Gaudreau (San Jose Sharks), played a terrific game himself, stopping 25 of 28 shots.
After a scoreless first period in which the Sting dominated and out-shot the Steelheads by a 12-7 margin, Sarnia continued their offensive pressure and were rewarded with the first goal of the game at 9:55 of the second period. Max Namestnikov, scored his second goal of the season with an assist from Zach Filak.
Mississauga tied the game at 15:22, on a short-handed break-away goal from Zakary Lavoie and the two teams skated off after 40 minutes, in a dead-heat, tied 1-1.
An early third period goal put Mississauga in front for the first time in the game as Owen Beck (Montreal Canadiens), scored a power-play goal from Chas Sharpe and Luke Misa at 1;32.
Sarnia showed no quit and tied the game with a power-play of their own at 9:13. Nolan Burke was in front and received a beautiful pass from Ty Voit (Toronto Maple Leafs), from his back-hand, Burke potted the goal into a wide open net. He extended his goal scoring streak to three games. With the assist, Voit ran his current point streak to seven games. Ryan Mast (Boston Bruins) was also awarded an assist on the goal.
James Hardie scored a late goal at 12:36 for the winner and despite a flurry of shots at the end, Sarnia failed to score, thanks in part to Leenders in net.
Sarnia out-shot Mississauga 35-28 and were 1/6 on the power-play. Mississauga swept the three-star selection and went ¼, with the man advantage.