Sting Comeback In Shootout, Clinch Playoff Spot
By Carl Chimenti
The Sarnia Sting (32-17-5-3) scored two unanswered goals in the third period and followed that up by out scoring the Soo Greyhounds (17-26-9-6) with two goals in the shoot-out as they came away with a come from behind 4-3 win Wednesday night at the GFL Memorial Gardens.
Sting Captain Nolan Dillingham (4th) scored at 3:25 in the third period from Tyson Doucette and Ryan Mast (Boston Bruins) to pull within one goal and Sandis Vilmanis (15th) (Florida Panthers) sent the game to overtime at 10:51 with the equalizer from Marko Sikic and Nolan Burke (Nashville Predators).
After a scoreless extra session in which the Sting out-shot the Greyhounds 3-0 and also had a power-play chance which they failed to convert, the game went to the shoot-out.
Luca DelBelBelluz (Columbus Blue Jackets), showed patience with the puck, beating Soo Greyhound goaltender Charlie Schenkel through the five hole and Christian Kyrou (Dallas Stars) put the finishing touch beating Schenkel, going up-stairs, from his back-hand, to score the second goal.
Sting goaltender Nicholas Surzycia was excellent through out the contest with 17 saves on 20 shots and stopped both Soo shooters in the shoot-out.
Markus Limpar-Lantz also scored for the Sting. Sarnia overall out-shot the Soo 31-20.
Neither team scored on the power-play as The Greyhounds went 0/2 and the Sting 0/6.
The three stars went to Kyrou (3rd), Burke (2nd) and Mark Duarte who had a goal and an assist for the Greyhounds, was selected as the first star.
A very close contested first period saw both teams skate off the ice tied at 1-1 after the first twenty minutes. Sarnia got on the board first as Limpar-Lantz scored his 13th of the year, which broke a nine-game goal drought. Limpar-Lantz put a shot on goal and Schenkel made the initial save but the puck came right back to Limpar-Lantz and his second shot went of a Soo defender and deflected into the net. Kyrou and Ritchie both assisted on the scoring play which came at 7:59. Less than a minute later the Greyhounds evened the score on a goal from Kalvyn Watson. The lone assist went to Bryce McConnell-Barker at 8:41. Sarnia out-shot the Soo 9-8 and both teams failed to convert on their only chance with the man-advantage.
A couple of controversial goals put the Greyhounds up 3-1 after two periods. The first goal came early at 1:52. The scoring play started in front of the Soo goal where Burke was stationed in front and he took an obvious high stick to his face and the referee completely missed the call and soon after the Greyhounds were heading the other way with Jordan D’Intino finishing off a two on one rush with Duarte. Brenden Sirizzotti was awarded the second assist on the play. The second goal came with the Sting on a five on three power-play. A blocked shot sent Duarte in alone on Surzycia with Voit in hot pursuit. Duarte went crashing into the net along with Surzycia and the puck. At first the referee signaled a penalty shot for Duarte, but then the play went under review and upon a lengthy review, the goal was allowed to stand short-handed and unassisted at 8:23. Once again Sarnia had the upper hand on the shot clock 8-6. The Sting failed to convert on four power-play chances.