The Saginaw Spirit did earn its first point of the 2016-17 OHL season, however, bad penalties at some very inopportune moment's cost the team yet again as they fall 4-3 in a shootout loss to the Peterborough Pete's at the Peterborough Memorial Centre in Peterborough, ON. Tonight.
The Spirit (0-4-1-0) had been clinging to a 3-2 lead late in the third period behind some brilliant goal tending from recently returned (from New Jersey Devils training camp) goalie Evan Cormier -who had just made his 48th save of the game- when Saginaw's overage veteran Hayden Hodgson was whistled for hooking at 15:26 of the third period, sending Peterborough on the power play with just over four minutes left in regulation.
Just over a minute and a half into the power play, Peterborough defenseman Nick Grima capitalized on the Spirit penalty to tie the game at three goals apiece with a power play goal at 17:05 of the third period.
The Spirit however, were able to finally convert on two of its first three power play opportunities early in the game tonight, something the Spirit had failed to do in 14 previous power play opportunities this season.
Detroit Red Wings' second round pick Filip Hronek scored his first career OHL goal (on the power play) at 19:56 of the first period to send the Spirit into the first intermission trailing 2-1 after one period of play.
Second year Spirit forward Kirill Maksimov would then re-direct a Keaton Middleton shot from the point for the teams second power play goal of the night, tying the game at 2 goals apiece at 16:34 of the second period.
Midway through the third period Tye Felhaber would score his first goal of the season for the 3-2 Spirit lead at 9:56 of the third period.
After giving up the game-tying power play goal late in the third period, the Spirit would then go on to spend the final 1:11 of the overtime session killing a 4 on 3 penalty kill following a bench minor penalty for too many men on the ice at 3:49 of the 5 minute overtime period.
Peterborough would score with its first shooter in the shootout, as Stephens missed a close one and Felhaber completely missed the net on his attempt. Peterborough's Jonathan Ang would beat Cormier for the final shootout winner.
Despite being the losing team and the road team's goal tender, Cormier was named the first star of the game for his 51 save effort, a class move by the Peterborough organization. Cormier would stop 51 of the 54 shots he faced tonight.
The Spirit will continue its eastern conference road trip tomorrow as they head to Kingston, ON. to take on the Kingston Frontenacs for a 7 pm game at the Rogers K-Rock Centre tomorrow night.