Riding a great performance by goal tender Evan Cormier (a fourth round pick of the New Jersey Devils in the 2016 NHL draft) the Saginaw Spirit (15-11-3-0) skated to a 3-1 road victory over the Oshawa Generals (13-17-2-0) in front of 5,209 at the Tribute Communities Centre in Oshawa, ON Sunday afternoon.
Recently signed Spirit forward Jake Goldowski (1) redirected a Marcus Crawford wrist shot from the point, beating Oshawa goal tender Kyle Keyser for his first career Ontario Hockey League goal to give the Spirit a 1-0 lead at 5:49 of the first period. Damien Giroux also added an assist on the Goldowski goal.
The Spirit peppered Keyser with 18-shots throughout the second period, before Saginaw forward D.J. Busdeker appeared to have given the Spirit a 2-goal lead with just over 2-minutes to play in the period, however, the referee decided to waive off Busdeker's goal with no apparent explanation or review, as the Spirit were left clinging to a 1-0 lead after 40-minutes, heading into the final period.
Oshawa RW Kenny Huether (13) set off a Teddy Bear downpour, tying the game at 1-goal apiece (1-1) with his thirteenth goal of the season just 5:09 into the third period with assists coming from Hayden McCool and Allan McShane.
Midway through the third period, Crawford dropped down from the left point and fired a shot from the left circle, beating Keyser to give the Spirit a 2-1 lead with the eventual game winning goal with assists coming from Busdeker and Cole Coskey.
With 57-seconds left in regulation, Coskey (16) banged home an empty-net goal from just past center ice with an assist from Mason Kohn at 19:03 of the third period to give the Spirit a 3-1 lead and ice the victory.
Cormier put his team on his back, stopping 33 of the 34 shots he would face in net for the Spirit.
The Spirit have Monday and Tuesday off before traveling across the Blue Water Bridge on Wednesday for a 7:05 pm face off against the Sarnia Sting at Progressive Auto Sales Arena in Sarnia, ON in, what is bulding up to be, a much anticipated rematch against the CHL's top ranked team after the Spirit battled back from a 6-goal deficit for a 7-6 OT win over the Sting in Saginaw last week.