KITCHENER, Ont. - Tobias Reider scored the winning goal with 1:31 left in the third period as the Kitchener Rangers edged the Windsor Spitfires 4-3 in Ontario Hockey League action Friday night.
Sprung on a 2-on-1 Reider one-timed Michael Catenacci's pass over sprawled-out Windsor goalie John Cullen to break a 3-3 tie.
The Rangers (1-0-0) were down 3-2 midway through the third before Curtis Meighan tied the game with a blast from the right faceoff circle, converting a Michael Hasson pass from behind the net.
It didn't look like the Rangers were going to need any late-game heroics as they got off to a fast start just two minutes into the game. Meighan wrapped a shot around the glass in the Windsor (0-2-0) end that popped out front, allowing Rangers first round draft pick Brent Pedersen to bang it in the open net.
Ben Thomson added to the lead midway through the first period on the powerplay when he deflected Evan McEneny's point shot through Cullen's legs.
The Spitfires got one back on a powerplay of their own, when Zack MacQueen stuffed in Tom Kunhackl's cross-crease pass with a two-man advantage.
The Spitfires tied the game and took a 3-2 lead 2:19 into the second period on goals by Michael Clarke and Kerby Rychel, son of Windsor GM Warren Rychel. Clarke banked a shot of Jonathan Jasper's skate and past Rangers goalie John Gibson. Rychel's goal came on the Spitfires' second 5-on-3 powerplay of the game.
Catenacci and McEneny both had two assists for the Rangers, while Thomson had a goal and an assist. Jared Gilbert also collected an assists for the Rangers.
Kunhackl, Nick Ebert, Jordan Maletta and Bryan Deeley picked up assists for Windsor.
Windsor was 2-for-8 on the powerplay, while Kitchener was 1-for-7. Windsor outshot the Rangers 39-33.
Rangers defenceman Ben Fanelli, who hasn't played since being carried off the ice on a stretcher in 2009 with skull and facial fractures due to a hit by Erie Otters Michael Liambas, received a long standing ovation during pre-game introductions.