With the help of some undisciplined play from the Rangers, the 67’s flew out of the gates in the first period firing 14 shots on goaltender John Gibson. However, it was the Rangers that drew first blood. Rieder picked up the puck behind the net and passed it to Ryan Murphy who was right in the slot and wired it past Petr Mrazek.
The 67’s tied it up on the two man advantage after some great puck movement. Tyler Toffoli scored his 36th of the season after knocking it in off his own rebound. A turnover from Stephen Midensky led to a 2-on-1 attack. Tyler Graovac jammed in big rebound off a shot by Steven Janes. A big relief off of Graovac has it was his first in 15 games.
Off a great feed through traffic from Tyler Toffoli, Sean Monahan shot the puck into the top corner of the net to give the 67’s a two-goal lead. The Kitchener Rangers would respond on the powerplay. NHL top ranked 2012 prospect Radek Faksa notched his 20th of the season after he grabbed a rebound off of Marc Zanetti’s skate and shot it in to the net top glove-hand side.
The Kitchener Rangers continued to press and it paid off midway through the third period. A great heads up play, Tobias Rieder made a crisp pass to Andrew Crescenzi in the high slot who fired it past Mrazek to tie the game at 3 on the powerplay.
After some great saves on both ends of the ice, Shane Prince came up clutch and jammed in a rebound on the side of the net from Cody Ceci’s point shot to close out the scoring.
The 67’s finish the weekend with a 3-0-0 sweep and outscored their opponents 21-10.
The Ottawa 67’s will host the Yakupov-less Sarnia Sting Friday night at 7:00pm. The time change is to accommodate the broadcast on Rogers Sportsnet. Meanwhile, the Kitchener Rangers will continue on the road for one more game when they travel to London Wednesday night to take on the Knights at 7:00pm.
Click here for the game sheet.
Random Thoughts from Behind the Lens:
- This game had just about everything: speed, turnovers (forced and otherwise), hits (lots of them), hard work, luck, determination, changes in momentum. In other words - it was entertaining and the outcome was not a given until the final buzzer sounded. Kitchener was full marks for a third weekend game.
- I just may be noticing it now, but Tyler Toffoli is getting more physical than I recall in the past.
- Who am I to argue with the Team1200 guys but I thought that Tyler Graovac or perhaps Michael Cajkovsky might have been considerations for Hardest Working 67's. Tyler is playing very strongly this year and Big Mike was a beast at times.
- Lots of Ranger fans traveled for the game. Perhaps they took in all the games in this Eastern Conference swing. Hope they took the opportunity to skate the canal.