Windsor, Ontario – The Otters won their eighth game in a row Thursday night with a 7-4 victory over the Windsor Spitfires. Dylan Strome notched four points and Alex DeBrincat and Connor McDavid both picked up three in the win.
It took the Otters barely three and a half minutes to jump on top of the Spitfires. Alex Fontinos turned the puck over and Mason Marchment capitalized, putting it behind the Windsor netminder. McDavid and Nick Betz had the next big chances, but both were denied by Fontinos. With the Otters on the power play, Jamie Lewis grabbed the puck along the near boards and tied the game on a shorthanded breakaway.
Kurtis MacDermid put a shot on net about two and a half minutes later that bounced off a defender’s pants straight to Kyle Maksimovich who buried his fifth goal of the year. McDavid, Remi Elie and DeBrincat came in with gorgeous passing, but DeBrincat was turned away, nearly the same scenario occuring minutes later. Back on the power play, Strome found DeBrincat, but Fontinos stopped DeBrincat for the third time in eight minutes before Devin Williams made a huge kick save at the other end to finish the period.
The second period saw offense from both teams. After killing an early penalty to Nick Betz, the Otters allowed a goal from Trevor Murphy, tying the game. Twenty seven seconds later, Strome put the Otters back in the lead, but Sam Povorozniouk took another twenty three to tie the game once again.
DeBrincat dropped the gloves with Graeme Brown at center ice despite a five-inch height difference in favor of Brown. Lucas Venuto took advantage of a power play to give the Spitfires the lead, but it wasn’t enough to silence the Otters. Back on the power play, DeBrincat scored his forty-eighth of the season from McDavid and Strome. A scrum at the end of the period put the Spitfires back on the power play to finish the period.
The Otters killed the penalty to start the third and, after a couple solid chances, took the lead. DeBrincat put the puck behind Fontinos up close from Strome and Cory Genovese. The Otters weren’t finished. Nick Baptiste went down on the ice in front of the net, but was able to corral the puck to Strome who pushed the puck back to Baptiste as he got to his feet. Baptiste was able to knock the bouncing puck home for a 6-4 lead. The Spitfires pulled Fontinos for an extra attacker, but DeBrincat found McDavid, who passed to Elie and signaled for him to keep it before Elie flipped the puck into the empty net for the 7-4 final.
DeBrincat is now one goal away from 50 and three points from 100, which, if he’s able to finish with two games to play, would make him the first Otters rookie to hit those marks. Strome sits three points behind London’s Mitchell Marner with 121 points while McDavid has notched 118. Baptiste and Elie’s goals were their thirtieth goals of the season and Elie now has points in nine straight games.
The Otters head to Plymouth Saturday night, looking to add to their 100 points in the OHL standings before travelling to Niagara Sunday afternoon to close out the regular season.
The Iron Workers Local Union No. 3 Ironmen of the Game:
1. Dylan Strome – 1G, 3A
2. Alex DeBrincat – 2G, 1A
3. Graeme Brown – 1A