Guelph Storm will get a confidence enhance
Storm gets first game on home ice this season, 6-3 over the Mississauga Steelheads
It may have been one game out of 68, but it was a very big game for the Guelph Storm.
For the first time in six attempts on home ice, and just the second time this season, the Storm skated away victorious on Friday night, putting together a complete 60 minutes in a 6-3 win over the Mississauga Steelheads.
Mississauga came into the game second in the Eastern Conference.
Twice the Storm battled back from being a goal down, with Sasha Pastujov (3g/1a) and Danny Zhilkin (1g/3a) each recording four point nights.
Pastujov’s second of the night, a power play goal with 35 seconds on the clock in the second period, proved to be the winner.
It was a much-needed sigh of relief for the team, who were off to a 1-9 start to the season.
“I think it was super important for us to get our first home win and give the fans what they’ve been waiting for,” Pastujov said.”With all the pre-season hype around us we obviously haven’t been giving them what they’ve been expecting, but we can give them more of what they saw tonight.”
Pastujov, who now has 10 goals on the season, said it was a complete game against one of the top teams in he league.
“Confidence is everything. When we’re playing with confidence there’s not a lot of teams in this league that can hang with us.”
The Storm played without a couple of key pieces, with defenseman Michael Buchinger and captain Cooper Walker both out with illness. They played the third period without Braeden Bowman, who suffered a lower body injury in the second period when he fell awkwardly.
Bowman and Poitras, the latter into an empty net, had Guelph’s other goals.
Guelph went three-for-four on the power play and killed off both Mississauga man advantages.
Jacob Oster was very steady in net, making all the saves he should and a couple he maybe shouldn’t have.
“For me the difference was just the compete and the attention to the details,” said Storm coach Chad Wiseman. “That willingness to be on the right side of the puck, I thought the communication was fantastic, our compete level was great and our buy-in to defend and block shots.
“We played the game the right way as a unit, as opposed to when things go the wrong way and we start playing as individuals.”
Guelph’s busy week continues with a game in Owen Sound on Saturday night, then back home Sunday afternoon at 2 pm against North Bay.