SAGINAW, Mich. – On Saturday night, the Saginaw Spirit (12-10-3-0, 27 points, 4th in West Division) welcome the No. 1 ranked team in the CHL, Sarnia Sting (29-5-1-0, 43 points, 2nd in West Division) to The Dow Event Center for the first of six meetings between the two teams. The puck drops at 7:05 p.m. Tonight marks the 11th annual Guns and Hoses Game sponsored by Gohm Insurance Restoration and Mike’s Wrecker Service. The Police and Firefighters faceoff at 5:00 p.m. at The Dow Event Center.
The Saginaw Spirit last took the ice on Thursday, November 30 at home in what was a deflating 4-3 loss to the Hamilton Bulldogs. Spirit left wing Kyle Bollers nabbed the first goal on the opening shift, marking his 5th of the season. Later in the period, right wing Ryan Stepien swiped a rolling puck past the Bulldogs netminder to put Saginaw up 2-0. During the second period, right wing Cole Coskey added the team’s final goal, which was also his team-leading 13th on the season. The Bulldogs rallied with three unanswered goals in the third period with two coming in the last five minutes of regulation to steal a 4-3 victory from the Saginaw Spirit. This loss snapped a Spirit five-game winning streak overall and seven consecutive victories on home ice.
As for Sarnia, the Sting played last night in a 3-2 home loss against the North Bay Battalion. The Sting allowed a goal in each of the three periods, which proved to be too much for goaltender Aidan Hughes in his 33-save performance. Sarnia center Ryan McGregor scored in the third period to bring the game within reach, and the Toronto Maple Leafs prospect also assisted on right wing Sean Josling’s first period goal.
Entering tonight’s contest, Saginaw has just one loss in their last six games, which puts the Spirit at a 7-2-1 clip over the last 10 games. The Sting also put together an identical 5-1 record in its last six games with a 6-3-1 mark dating back to November 5 (10 games).
Tonight will be Saginaw’s first opportunity to square off against the Sting in the 2017-18 season. The Spirit will travel to Sarnia, Ontario on Saturday, December 13th for a divisional outing at the Progressive Auto Sales Arena. Last season, Saginaw and Sarnia split a six-game season series at three victories apiece with the Spirit securing two victories on home ice and one win on the road during that time span.
Heading into tonight’s meeting, Sarnia will feature right wing Jordan Kyrou, a St. Louis Blues draft pick, who was recently named the OHL Performer of the Month for November. Kyrou also earned this honor for the month of October. So far, the Sting forward has amassed 18 goals and 34 assists on the season.
The Spirit have a player who also received OHL Monthly accolades. Blade Jenkins was named OHL Rookie of the Month Friday afternoon. The Jackson, Michigan native scored nine goals and added five assists in the month, also scoring his first OHL hat trick on Nov. 4 vs. North Bay. Jenkins is listed as a top prospect by NHL Central Scouting Service heading into this year’s NHL Draft.
Season Tickets for the 2017-18 season are on sale NOW! Reserve your seat at The Dow Event Center by calling (989) 497-7747 or visit www.saginawspirit.com for more information. YOUR Region. YOUR team. YOU’RE invited.
Stay current with the latest from your Spirit by logging on to www.saginawspirit.com. Follow the Spirit all season long on Facebook (www.facebook.com/spirithockey), Twitter (@SpiritHockey), Instagram (@saginawspirit), and Youtube (SaginawSpirit)