In their final game of the 2017 OHL preseason, the Sarnia Sting played host to the Windsor Spitfires in the second half of a home-and-home on Saturday night.
The game started off with a scoreless opening frame. Hugo Leufvenius had the best opportunity in the first period for the Sting. Leufvenius went inside-out on a Spitfires defenceman in the slot before ringing one off the post short side on Windsor goaltender Lucas Patton.
Windsor forward Jake Smith followed up with his own post-ringer on Sting goaltender Justin Fazio two minutes later.
Both teams traded powerplay opportunities to round out the period, with neither side hitting the score sheet in the first period.
Pucks began to find the back of the net in the second period. Windsor opened the scoring as Smith went high glove on Fazio deep in the slot. Daniel D’Amico scored for Windsor again four minutes later, and the Spitfires found themselves with a 2-0 lead. D’Amico was in alone on a breakaway and put one low past Fazio
With just under four minutes left in the second, the tide turned.
Sarnia forward Cameron Hough dropped the mitts with Spitfires forward Louis Latta, himself a member of the Sting last season. Hough tossed the final punch, taking the knockdown over Latta.
With the crowd pumped up and the Sting finding some jump in their step, Sarnia forward Jordan Ernst came streaking down the left wing, firing one past Patton. Kelton Hatcher drew the lone assist.
The Sting headed to the room down 2-1, but momentum was on their side.
Right off the mark in the third, Sarnia was in full control. Less than three minutes in, Sting forward Curtis Egert would find a loose puck in front of the Spitfires’ crease to tie the game 2-2. Brady Hinz and Hugo Leufvenius would pick up assists on the play.
A couple big saves from Fazio kept the score tied until late. Jordan Ernst scored his second of the game after a spinning shot would get past Patton with three minutes left, giving Sarnia a 3-2 lead.
Ernst would add an empty-net goal a minute later to make it 4-2 and complete the hat-trick.
Brayden Guy added in a second empty net goal to cap off the 5-2 victory for Sarnia.
Fazio recorded the win in goal for Sarnia, stopping 23 of 25 shots against.
The Sting now prepare for their season opener September 22 in Guelph.
Sarnia hosts their home opener the next day, September 23, in a Saturday night matchup with the Kitchener Rangers. Puckdrop is 7:05 PM at Progressive Auto Sales Arena.
Tickets for the home opener can be purchased at the box office or by clicking here.