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Otters Complete Comeback over Spitfires in OT

Matt Mead

 

The Erie Otters beat the Windsor Spitfires in overtime tonight at the Erie Insurance Arena by the final score of 4-3. Hayden Fowler scored the game-tying and game-winning goal. Kyle Maksimovich scored his 30th goal of the season and notched two assists for a three-point night on his birthday.

Despite the Otters putting up two quick shots on goal in the opening minute of the 1st, they fell somewhat flat in the first half of the period until rookie Jack Duff laid a hit on Luke Boka seven minutes in. The hit resulted in a fight between the two, re-energizing the team and the crowd, and landing Duff in the box with a Fighting major and Boka to the locker room with an Instigating minor, Fighting major, and 10-minute Game Misconduct. D’Amico took a Slashing penalty with 5:37 left in the period and the Otters maintained excellent zone time but couldn’t hit the back of the net. The period ended with the Otters down 1-0 on the scoreboard but up in shots 11-6.

Maksimovich’s shot hit the back of DiPietro’s net just 49 seconds into the 2nd, but it was reviewed and determined to be No Goal as Hayden Fowler took a Cross Checking penalty right before the puck crossed the goal line. The Spitfires’ Starikov scored with 8:32 left to make it 2-0 off a slapshot from the circle. Troy Lajeunesse got the Otters on the board officially with three and a half minutes left in the 2nd to cut the Spitfires’ lead in half, burying his own rebound that popped back out of the net from the initial goal for good measure.

The Otters started the 3rd on the penalty kill from the Tripping penalty Maksimovich took with 6.8s left in the previous period. Tyler Angle neutralized the penalty with a Hooking call 40 seconds in, giving the Otters some time on the PP, during which they generated some great scoring chances, including a chance from Fellows who was wide open backdoor that just missed. Instead, Cole Purboo scored for the Spitfires 3:05 in to make it 3-1. Just past the halfway mark of the game, Maksimovich made a power move, stealing the puck from a defenseman in DiPietro’s crease and scoring with a Crosby-esque backhander. The Otters pulled Murphy for the extra skater and drew a Tripping call against D’Amico to get a late PP. Hayden Fowler scored the tying goal on the PP with just 7.7 seconds left to force overtime. The crowd of 5262 at the Erie Insurance Arena erupted into cheers, energizing the team for overtime. Kyle Maksimovich took a highstick on the play, but Hayden Fowler put the puck in the back of the net just 39 seconds into overtime to end the game.

The Otters outshot the Spitfires 28-18 in the 4-3 OT win. Hayden Fowler was first star of the game with two goals, including the game-tying and game-winning goal. Kyle Maksimovich was second star with a three-point night, and Lajeunesse was third with a goal and an assist.

The Otters play their last two games of the 2017-18 season next weekend at home.

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