The Saginaw Spirit (22-17-3-0) could not recover from an early 4-goal deficit, eventually losing a 6-2 road decision to the Barrie Colts (24-15-2-1) at the Barrie Molson Centre in Barrie, ON tonight.
Despite dominating the first half of the opening period, out-shooting Barrie 7-3 in the first 10-minutes of the game, the Spirit were stunned when the Colts responded in the second half of the first period with four goals on 4-straight shots in the final 10-minutes of the period to take a 4-0 lead into the first intermission, chasing Spirit starting goal tender Evan Cormier after the fourth goal.
Barrie forward Aaron Luchuk (35) scored his thirty-fifth goal of the season to give the Colts a 1-0 lead at 12:21 of the first period, then Luchuk set up Dimitry Sokolov (23) with his twenty-third goal of the season to make it a 2-0 game just over 2-minutes later at 14:40 of the first period.
Luchuk then setup Colts forward Andrei Svechnikov (17) with a power play goal, his seventeenth goal of the season to give Barrie a 3-0 lead at 17:08 of the first period, before Ben Hawerchuk (9) made it a 4-0 game with his ninth goal of the season just 17-seconds later at 17:25 of the first period.
Cormier returned in the second period as the Spirit cut the Barrie lead to 4-1 with a power play goal from Blade Jenkins (15) who scored his fifteenth goal of the season, with assists from Keaton Middleton and Jake Goldowski at 7:03 of the second period.
The Colts would make it a 4-goal game (5-1) when Sokolov (24) scored his second of the night, with an assist from Luchuk at 5:48 of the third period.
Midway through the third period, Spirit rookie Ryan Stepien (5) cut the Colts' lead to 5-2 with his fifth goal of the season from Aidan Prueter and Danny Katic at 10:04 of the final period.
Barrie rookie Ryan Suzuki (9) scored his ninth goal of the season to round out the scoring and give the Colts a 6-2 lead at 19:10 of the final period.
The Spirit will look to get back on track with another road game against the Sudbury Wolves at the Sudbury Community Arena in Sudbury, ON at 7:05 pm tomorrow evening.