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Beleskey's overtime goal keeps Bulls alive in OHL final series with Rangers

NHL.com @NHL

BELLEVILLE, Ont. - The Kitchener Rangers were poised for a series sweep, but Matt Beleskey had other plans.

The Belleville Bulls captain scored a power-play goal at 8:57 of overtime Tuesday night to give the Bulls a 5-4 victory in Game 4 of the Ontario Hockey League final.

Beleskey's first shot was blocked by sprawling Rangers forward Nick Spaling. However, Beleskey gathered up the loose puck and snapped a low shot past screened Rangers goalie Josh Unice.

The Rangers lead the best-of-seven affair three games to one going into Thursday's Game 5 at the Kitchener Auditorium.

The Bulls showed heart last night in coming back from deficits of 3-0 and 4-1 to force overtime.

The Rangers ran up a 3-0 lead in the first thanks to goals from Matt Halischuk, Spaling and Nazem Kadri.

Halischuk outraced a Bulls defender to reach a crafty Spaling dump-in before Belleville goalie Mike Murphy could poke the puck away. Halischuk then speared the puck home for a short-handed goal on what was the Rangers' first shot of the game.

The Bulls got one back before the end of the first on P.K. Subban's power-play slapshot.

The Rangers went up 4-1 early in the second as Mike Mascioli swept home a loose puck.

Keaton Turkiewicz got one back for Belleville five minutes later but the Bulls still trailed 4-2 after two.

Then, Belleville summoned up its best period of the series.

Turkiewicz pushed a puck past Unice's outstretched stick a minute in. Then, with 8:49 to play, Turkiewicz appeared to tie the game by swatting a puck in out of mid-air. However, the refs and video judges ruled it was batted in with a high stick.

The Bulls kept plugging.

With 4:18 to play, Eric Tangradi banked a wrap-around shot in off Unice's glove to make it 4-4.

The Rangers were forced into overtime for just the second time in the playoffs. In the second round, the Rangers went three overtimes before prevailing against 3-2 in Sarnia.

Belleville began overtime on a power play after Scott Tregunna took a hooking penalty late in the third.

Matt Pepe and Nazem Kadri also took penalties on overtime. Kadri was in the box when Beleskey scored.

The Bulls outshot the Rangers 9-1 in the extra period.

Game 6, if necessary, will be in Belleville on Saturday.

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