ONTARIO, Calif. – The Ontario Reign, proud affiliate of the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings, knocked off the Las Vegas Wranglers, 6-5 in overtime before 6,296 in attendance Sunday night at Citizens Business Bank Arena. Lane Caffaro ended it with a power-play goal at 2:41 in overtime. Jeff Corey finished with a goal and assisted on the game-tying and game-winning goals.
After falling behind 1-0 in the first period, defenseman Pat Bowen tied the game with the first point of his professional career. Reign newcomer Alex Bourret found Bowen between the circles with a crisp pass as he snuck down off the point and Bowen snapped it past Michael Ouzas. Less than three minutes later, David Walker took the puck across the Las Vegas blue line and dropped it off for Kyle Kraemer, who gave the Reign a 2-1 lead with a wrist shot over Ouzas’ glove. Vince Bellissimo added his second goal of the period for Las Vegas to tie it at two apiece at 15:58.
Chaz Johnson amped up the excitement of the game in the second period. At 5:21, Johnson netted an unassisted goal with a blast from the point to put Ontario up 3-2. Minutes later, Johnson collided hard with Ouzas in the crease which sparked several skirmishes. The scrappy winger received a five-minute major and game misconduct for interference and Wrangler backup goalie, Archie Henderson, took over in net. Ontario was able to kill off the penalty and extend its lead, 4-2, on a two-man advantage. Corey one-timed a bouncing rebound into the top corner of the net.
Vegas wouldn’t give up. The Wranglers tallied a goal in the second period and two in the third to reclaim the lead, 5-4. However, Dusty Collins tied it at 5-all. Corey circled behind the net, fired a shot, and Collins poked the rebound past Henderson to send the game into overtime.
Las Vegas blinked first in overtime, as Geoff Paukovich was sent to the box for slashing at 2:00. The Reign set up in the Wrangler zone and the puck moved from Shawn Collymore, to Corey, to Caffaro, to the back of the cage as the crowd roared. Ontario claimed two points with a final score of Reign 6, Wranglers 5.
Corey finished with three points, while Collins and Bourret each notched two. Kellen Briggs made 34 saves in the win. Ouzas and Henderson combined for 30 saves for Las Vegas.
Tonight's three stars were: 1. ONT - Lane Caffaro 2. ONT - Jeff Corey 3. LV - Vince Bellissimo