A third-period goal by the son of a former London Knight pulled the reins on a hard charge toward a comeback by the Knights in a 4-2 loss to the Sarnia Sting at Budweiser Gardens on Friday night.
Brayden Guy snapped a puck through a screen and into the London net with 6:42 remaining in the third period to stop the momentum London had built on third period goals by Liam Gilmartin and Ruslan Gazizov. Guy’s father Mark played for the Knights from 1988-91 and then went on to a career with the Western Mustangs.
Down 3-0 through 40 minutes, London head coach Dale Hunter made a goaltending change to try to find a spark as Owen Flores stepped into the Knights crease for his first appearance in the Ontario Hockey League. Almost instantly, Flores was called on to stop a shot off a cross-ice pass from Nolan Burke to Nolan Dann and he flashed out a left leg and made the save.
Not long after that Gerard Keane got a puck to the Sarnia net and Gilmartin put it past Anson Thornton to make it 3-1.
Just 58 seconds later Gazizov came into the Sarnia zone on the left wing and snapped a shot past Thornton to get London to within one.
The Sting kept London from getting the equalizer on two power plays after that and picked up their second win in two games over the Knights and their fifth victory in six games overall.
Read more: London Knights: Back in time — May 12
Dann opened the scoring for the Sting at 9:13 of the first period as he cut out in front of the London net, glided across the crease and slipped the puck under Brett Brochu to make it 1-0.
In the second period, Ty Voit popped in a pass at the side of the goal with one second to go in a Sting power play and a Ryan Mast shot found its way off a body in front for a 3-0 Sarnia lead.
The Sting held London away from their net through the first 40 minutes holding the Knights to eight shots on goal.
Sarnia outshot London 30-14 overall.
Brett Brochu made 21 saves in goal through two periods for the Knights.
London will now host Kitchener at 4 p.m. on Saturday afternoon. The Rangers had a 4-0 lead at home against Saginaw on Friday and surrendered six straight goals to the Spirit in a 6-4 loss.
Teddy Bear Toss 2021
The Teddy Bear Toss will be back at Budweiser Gardens on Saturday, December 4 at 4 pm against the Sarnia Sting. This will be the 20th Teddy Bear Toss in London Knights history. Every one has brought down stuffed toys from the stands at the London Ice House in 2001 and then Budweiser Gardens every season after that and every event has benefitted the Salvation Army.
The Knights record for bears is 10,671 set in 2012 when Seth Griffith scored the Teddy Bear Toss goal.
The Sting stopped Luke Evangelista’s point streak at 12 games. In that span the Knights captain recorded 12 goals and 7 assists for 19 points and the second longest OHL streak this season behind Emmett Sproule of the Peterborough Petes who pushed his streak to 16 games on Friday night. Twelve games tied a streak that Evangelista’s former billet-mate Connor McMichael put together from December 6, 2019 to February 1, 2020.
McMichael had a 17-game streak that same season. The longest recent streak by a London player came from Liam Foudy who had recorded at least one point in 18 consecutive games before the pandemic put a stop to the 2019-20 OHL year.
The Knights will play their second game in under 24 hours on Saturday, Nov. 20 at 4 p.m. against Kitchener. It will kick off a home and home with the Rangers that will conclude on Sunday, Nov. 21 at 2 p.m. in Kitchener. London and the Rangers have not played a game against each other this season but will meet 10 times in all.
This will also mark the first time that the Knights have played three games in three days in 2021-22.
Coverage will begin 30 minutes before puck drop on 980 CFPL, at www.980cfpl.ca and on the Radioplayer Canada app.