The Sarnia Sting celebrate a powerplay goal during the 2017-18 season. (Metcalfe Photography)

Ruzicka Scores OT Winner In Thanksgiving Matinee

Adam Ruzicka scored just over a minute into overtime to give the Sarnia Sting a 6-5 victory over the Hamilton Bulldogs Monday afternoon.

The win is Sarnia’s fifth straight, and gives them an OHL-best 12 points on the young season. Barrie, Kitchener and Sault Ste. Marie all have 11.

Franco Sproviero had three points Monday, and says confidence has played a role in the early season success.

“We’re a confident team, it’s exciting coming to the rink when you’re confident in yourself but you don’t want to get too comfortable, you want to keep working hard in practice and getting better.”

The Sarnia Sting steamrolled their way to a 4-0 lead through 20 minutes Monday, with first period goals from Brady Hinz, Anthony Salinitri, Jordan Kyrou and Sean Josling.

Give the Hamilton Bulldogs credit, they didn’t give up. They scored a pair of goals 32 seconds apart ealy in the second that changed the tone of the hockey game completely.

With Hamilton on the powerplay, Franco Sproviero and Ryan McGregor executed a shorthanded two on one to perfection to help give the Sting a bit of breathing room.

Once again, the Bulldogs didn’t roll over. The visitors scored three goals to force overtime, guaranteeing themselves at least a point in game where they trailed by four goals.

Ruzicka helped salvage the afternoon for the Sting, as he beat Brigden’s Kaden Fulcher with a quick snap shot that might have redirected off the defenceman’s stick.

Sproviero likes how the team found a way to win.

“We don’t want to win a game like that after going up four goals, we lost ourselves for a little bit in the second period, but we battled back and showed a lot of character to come back and still get the two points, that’s what’s important.”

2,456 fans were on hand for the Thanksgiving matinee.

The Sting have a busy three game weekend ahead with home games Friday and Saturday night against Mississauga and Guelph, before traveling to Windsor Sunday.