What an opening game to the Memorial Cup round-robin.
Back and forth the Kitchener Rangers and Gatineau Olympiques went on Friday. It was only fitting that the game would be decided in an extra session as Justin Azevedo scored 6:59 into the first overtime to give Kitchener a 6-5 victory.VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS (SPORTSNET)
The game couldn’t have started any better for the home team as Kitchener jumped out to a 3-0 lead 11:57 into the contest. Jason Akeson scored the Rangers’ first goal 6:17 in while Nick Spaling gave them their second 1:32 later. Matt Halischuk made then scored their third with 8:03 left in the period.
But Gatineau found their legs and made it a game by scoring the last two goals in an explosive first period of the tournament. Michael Stinziani got Gatineau on the board with 5:47 remaining and Paul Byron made it a 3-2 game 2:27 later.
Kitchener regained their three-goal lead once again, scoring the first two goals of the second period as Mikkel Boedker scored 2:30 in as the Rangers were on the power play and Halischuk scored his second of the game 9:29 in. Gatineau’s Darryl Smith brought the score to 5-3 heading into the second intermission with a power play goal with 7:03 left.
The Olympiques would force the overtime by scoring the only two goals of the third. Nicholas Valliere Mayer brought them to within 5-4 with a power play goal 3:59 and Alexandre Quesnel tied it at five 9:05 in.
The two offenses were then shut down until Azevedo’s overtime winner as it turned out that it would have to come on the power play to end it.
Ryan Mior was spectacular in net for the Olympiques as the goaltender turned away 47 Rangers shots in the game. Josh Unice stopped 23 shots for the Rangers.
Mike Duco finished the game a -2 while picking up a tripping penalty 12:36 into the second period.More Information