Storm come out on short end of gritty night at the Sleeman Centre

Tony Saxon/Guelph Today

By Tony Saxon,

Get used to it.

A tight, gritty, fight-for-every-inch hockey game at the Sleeman Centre Friday night is the kind of hockey the Guelph Storm can expect the rest of the way as the regular season heads into the home stretch.

The Ottawa 67’s prevailed, scoring the lone goal of the shootout in a 2-1 victory over the Storm.

Guelph coach George Burnett played a hunch in the shootout, using defencemen as two of his three shooters. But Ryan Merkley and Dmitri Samorukov were both stopped by Ottawa goaltender Olivier Tremblay.

“Tonight it was a hunch. Sammy has shown in practice that he’s got a pretty hard move,” Storm coach George Burnett said.

“You’re always playing your hunches when you get in that type of situation and tonight they won that battle.”

Guelph had tied the game with two minutes left in regulation when Cam Hillis found Alexey Toropchenko on Tremblay’s doorstep for the redirect.

Isaac Ratcliffe hit the crossbar with time winding down and Merkley hit the post in overtime.

The 67’s third shooter, Sasha Chmelevski, tucked the puck just inside the post beyond the outstretched pad of Anthony Popovich for the winning marker.

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