The Erie Otters are playing some of their best hockey in years, so it was only fitting that they were the team to ground the high-flying Windsor Spitfires.
Sean Jones scored the tiebreaking goal late in the third period to seal one of Erie's biggest wins in the past four seasons as they upset the Spitfires 4-2 on Saturday night in the Ontario Hockey League.
The Otters (10-9-1-0) have a winning record for the first time since Sept. 22, 2006, when they beat Windsor on opening night of the 2006-07 season. Erie swept a three-game weekend series for the first time since Oct. 29, 2005. The Otters also have their first three-game winning streak since December of last year.
They reached those milestones by beating the Spitfires (19-2-0-0), the Canadian Hockey League's top-ranked team, snapping Windsor's 13-game winning streak in the process.
The Spitfires jumped out to a 2-1 lead by the end of the first period on goals by OHL scoring leaders Taylor Hall and Ryan Ellis, but Luke Gazdic's power-play goal tied the score at 2-2 with 6:33 left in the second. After Jones' go-ahead goal, Zack Torquato added an empty-netter to secure the win.
Thanks to their simple style of play and some stellar netminding by Jaroslav Janus, the Otters have allowed three goals or less in nine of their last 11 games.
Elsewhere in the OHL, it was: Belleville 3, Sudbury 2; Ottawa 4, Plymouth 2; Owen Sound 4, Kingston 0; Peterborough 5, Niagara 4 (OT); Saginaw 5, Sault Ste. Marie 3; and Sarnia 4, Kitchener 3.
At Erie, Pa., Erie's power play went 2-for-9 against Windsor and finished the three-game weekend 6-for-14. The Otters' league-best penalty kill was 6-for-6, improving their streak to 15 straight.
Janus made 32 saves to post his eighth win in his past 10 starts, while Spitfires netminder Andrew Engelage stopped 35 shots.
Bulls 3, Wolves 2
At Belleville, Ont., Luke Judson scored midway through the third period to break a 2-2 tie and lead the Bulls past Sudbury.
Cory Tanaka had a goal and an assist and Shawn Lalonde also scored for Belleville (13-5-1-1), which has won five straight.
Peter Hermenegildo and Patrik Lusnak added goals for the Wolves (9-7-1-1).
67's 4, Whalers 2
At Plymouth, Mich., Logan Couture and Corey Cowick each had three points as Ottawa defeated the Whalers.
Couture had a goal and two assists and Cowick two goals, including the game-winner, and a helper for the 67's (11-9-0-1). Ryan Martindale scored the other goal for Ottawa.
A.J. Jenks and Kaine Geldart scored for Plymouth (6-11-2-0).
Attack 4, Frontenacs 0
At Owen Sound, Ont., Tyler Beskorowany made 37 saves and stopped a second-period penalty shot by Josh Brittain to record his first OHL shutout as the Attack blanked Kingston.
Mike Lomas contributed two goals and an assist, while Grant McGee and Andrew Wilkins also scored for Owen Sound (7-8-3-1).
Anthony Peters stopped 47 shots in a losing effort for the Frontenacs (4-12-4-0).
Petes 5, IceDogs 4 (OT)
At St. Catharines, Ont., Tony Romano scored a pair of clutch goals to help Peterborough topple the IceDogs.
Romano scored on the power play with eight seconds remaining in the first period and notched the overtime winner for the Petes (9-11-0-1). Ryan Spooner, Zach Harnden and Brett Theberge also scored.
Chris DeSousa had a hat trick and Andrew Merrett tallied the other marker for the IceDogs (6-8-3-4).
Spirit 5, Greyhounds 3
At Saginaw, Mich., Chris Chappell led the way with two goals and an assist as the Spirit ran their winning streak to four games, beating Sault Ste. Marie.
Jack Combs and Joe Pleckaitis added a goal and an assist for Saginaw (12-6-0-0). Barry Sanderson scored the other goal.
Anthony Peluso, Matt Lyall and Matt Caria replied for the Greyhounds (10-8-1-0).
Sting 4, Rangers 3
At Sarnia, Ont., the Sting held off a late charge by Kitchener to post the win.
Marcus Pepe, Matt Martin, Justin DiBenedetto and Daniel Lombardi scored for Sarnia (9-8-1-1).
Chris MacKinnon scored two goals and Scott Timmins also scored for the Rangers (7-9-1-1), who have lost eight in a row.