The Owen Sound Attack picked up a single point on Friday night, but lost to the Kitchener Rangers for the 2nd time in as many games.
Holding a 4-2 lead early in the 3rd period, the Attack were unable to hold off a charging Kitchener squad who scored three straight goals including the OT winner to grab a 5-4 lead at the Kitchener Memorial Auditorium.
Owen Sound got multi-point efforts from Sean Durzi, Jonah Gadjovich, Maksim Sushko, and Aidan Dudas on the evening, but the big offensive night wasn’t enough for the Attack to snap their three game losing skid.
An awkward bounce off of one of the zebras allowed Greg Meireles to pick up the puck behind the Attack’s and bounce it off the back of Mack Guzda and into the cage for 1-0 Kitchener lead just 43 seconds into the frame.
Not about to let the Rangers run away with things, Owen Sound responded quickly in emphatic form.
Just 23 seconds after finding themselves down a goal, the Attack were able to win a puck battle along the halfwall in their own end before Mitchell Russell went streaking up the left hand wing.
Owen Sound’s 1st round pick in the 2017 OHL Priority Selection broke across the Rangers’ blueline before promptly snapping a laser up and over the glove of Luke Richardson for his 1st career OHL marker.
Jonah Gadjovich and Jacob Friend assisted on the goal, which came about five minutes before the Attack found the back of the net again.
This time it was a powerplay marker thanks to the dogged work of Alan Lyszczarczyk to force Riley Damiani into a tripping minor.
With Gadjovich parked in front of the net, Sean Durzi and Aidan Dudas came together to get a shot on goal that resulted in a rebound laying right in Gadjovich’s wheelhouse.
The Vancouver Canucks’ 2nd round pick in this past summer’s NHL Draft made no mistake on his 12th of the season, hammering the puck past Richardson and into the net for a 2-1 lead.
Owen Sound held onto that one goal advantage until the 16:07 mark of the 1st, when Kitchener capitalized on a powerplay of their own.
After successfully killing off a boarding penalty to Chase Campbell, the Attack were whistled for too many men and that’s when Kole Sherwood scored on a shortside wrister to draw the Rangers level at two.
That’s how things would stand until late in the 2nd period, after the middle stanza began with the Attack tilting the ice in their favour for the first half of the frame.
It wasn’t until the 14:09 mark of the 2nd that the deadlock was broken on a controversial play that saw Chase Campbell take a high hit from Logan Stanley that sparked a two-on-one for Aidan Dudas and Maksim Sushko.
With Campbell trying to gather himself after the questionable hit, Dudas set Sushko up for his 13th of the year, a goal that gave Owen Sound a 3-2 lead heading into the final period.
It didn’t take the Attack long to turn that 3-2 lead into a two goal advantage when play resumed for the 3rd period either.
Just seven seconds into the frame, Sushko picked up his 2nd goal of the evening on a gorgeous play that started when Sean Durzi jumped a clean faceoff win by Aidan Dudas to spark an odd-man rush.
Durzi immediately sped into the Kitchener zone before feeding Sushko the puck for a quick deke around Luke Richardson and a 4-2 Attack lead.
Kitchener cut into that lead near the midway point of the 3rd though when Adam Mascherin scored his 15th of the year with Alan Lyszczarczyk sitting in the box for holding.
Then, it was Logan Stanley breaking in over the blueline and wiring a slapshot past Guzda to tie things up at four with 8:49 left in regulation.
Stanley’s goal forced overtime and eventually set up a Kole Sherwood winner for the Rangers after a failed Attack clearing attempt just 1:25 into overtime.
Scoring the winner earned Sherwood the Mac Taylor Corporation 1st Star of the Game, while Kitchener’s Joseph Garreffa was named the game’s 2nd star. Aidan Dudas picked up 3rd star honours on the night.
The Mark McDade Chestnut Park Shots on Goal finished at 43-39 for the Rangers, with Mack Guzda turning aside 34 shots on the evening.
Owen Sound wraps up the weekend by playing host to the Guelph Storm for the 2nd Saturday in a row in another 7:30pm puck drop at the Bayshore.
Tickets for the 2nd entry in the 2017-18 edition of the Highway 6 Rivalry are available at the MacVicar & McComb ReMax Attack Box Office, online at www.attackhockey.com, or by calling 519-371-7452.
This season of Attack Hockey is brought to you Lerner’s Personal Injury Lawyers and Bertrand & Muzzell Paralegal Services.