Windsor Spitfires goalie Michael DiPietro stares down a shot as a member of Team OHL during the Canada-Russia Series at Progressive Auto Sales Arena in Sarnia, November 8, 2018. Photo courtesy of Metcalfe Photography.

DiPietro backstops Team OHL to a 3-1 win over Russia in Sarnia

The Windsor Spitfires put their contribution in for this year’s Canada-Russia Series.

Goaltender Michael DiPietro was between the pipes for Team OHL Thursday night as the series stopped at Sarnia’s Progressive Auto Sales Arena. He stopped all but one of the 19 shots he faced in Team OHL’s 3-1 win over the Russian squad.

Sarnia Sting head coach Derian Hatcher served as the bench boss for Team OHL.

Isaac Ratcliffe of the Guelph Storm scored, along with MacKenzie Entwistle of the Hamilton Bulldogs, and a”Sportscentre”-calibre goal scored late in the game for insurance by Barrett Hayton of the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds, a goal jokingly described by DiPietro after the game as “disgusting”.

DiPietro had nothing but praise for the OHL’s defensive corps.

“I think our defence did a great job killing plays at the blue line tonight, making sure I could see pucks from the perimeter,” said DiPietro. “It made my life easier and I’m really happy with the win.”

Thursday’s contest was the third in a series of six between Russian players and teams comprised of players from the OHL, the Western Hockey League and the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, and the first of two involving OHL players. The second contest is in Oshawa on Monday night.

OHL players improved their record against Russia in the Series to 25-5-1. They also outshot Russia 23-19, for the 14th consecutive Series game.

After Oshawa on Saturday, the Series moves to Sherbrooke, QC on Tuesday, then ends in Drummondville, QC on Wednesday.