Six second-period goals by the Kitchener Rangers led them to a 7-2 victory over the London Knights on Saturday afternoon as both teams returned from their holiday break.
The Knights shook off any turkey-flavoured rust right away as they scored on their first two shots of the game. Matvey Guskov deflected a point shot past Jacob Ingham just 1:43 into the opening period and then Billy Moskal fired home his fifth goal of the year just under five minutes later.
The middle period belonged to the Rangers, though, as their veterans went to work offensively. Dallas Stars draft pick Riley Damiani scored twice and assisted on two others and Jonathan Yantsis kept pace on a second consecutive 50-goal season by scoring goals 20 and 21 of this year. Overager Greg Meireles and defenceman Arber Xhekaj scored 28 seconds apart to make it 6-2 through 40 minutes.
Kitchener got the only goal of the third period as Liam Hawel stripped a puck free in the Knights zone and fed Mike Petizian to finish the scoring. Petizian put the puck past Dylan Myskiw, who replaced Brett Brochu in the third period.
The Rangers penalty kill turned in a big performance against London’s power play as they killed off all nine Knights opportunities. Kitchener went 2-for-7 with the man advantage.
The Rangers outshot London 30-24.
The Knights will await word from the OHL on two penalties handed out during the game. London forward Cole Tymkin received a match penalty for blindsiding as he hit Rangers forward Isaac Langdon at centre ice just past the midway mark of the opening period. Langdon did not return to the game.
Knights defenceman Gerard Keane was also ejected from the game in the second period when he was assessed a game misconduct for unsportsmanlike conduct.
Decisions on those incidents may have to be made quickly as London heads for Sarnia on Sunday afternoon.