The LaSalle Vipers erased a two-goal second period deficit and came back to defeat the Leamington Flyers by a score of 5-3 on Wednesday night in LaSalle.
Things got off to shaky start for the Vipers when the Flyers scored on the first shift of the game via a breakaway goal by Ryan MacPherson. The Vipers got the best of the rest of the period but Leamington goalie Boe Piroski was up to the task and kept the score at 1-0 through 20 minutes of play.
LaSalle brought the game level at 4:51 of the second period with a power-play goal from Spencer Lecot, but two Flyers goals 1:30 apart put the visitors up by a pair midway through the period. Three minutes following Andrew Uturo’s goal to make it 3-1 and with the Flyers on a power-play looking to extend their lead, Vipers captain Nic Pavia followed up a great drive to the net by Ryan Barwitzki and jammed one in for a huge shorthanded goal. The Vipers special teams would then strike again with Brody Gillis scoring on a power-play with 27 seconds left in the period to send the teams into the second intermission tied at 3-3.
The game-winning goal came early in the third period on what was a spectacular individual effort by Patrick McManus. The slick Vipers forward beat two different Flyers with nifty moves before beating Piroski over his glove to give his team the 4-3 lead. LaSalle shut things down completely through the rest of the period with the Flyers only registering five shots on goal over the game’s final 20 minutes. Wylie Birkett hit the empty net to salt it away.
Spencer Lecot and Noah Morneau each had three-point games to lead the attack, and Kyle Downey stopped 18 shots to pick up his fifth win of the season.
The Vipers have now rattled off four straight wins but remain one point back of fourth-place St. Marys after Wednesday night’s action, as the Lincolns were winners in London. The Vipers however hold two games in hand. Games don’t get any easier though with road games against London on Saturday night and then Chatham on Saturday afternoon to close out the week.