By Tony Saxon, Guelph Mercury A couple of much maligned Guelph Storm players got a chance to win one for the boys yesterday
Goaltender Matt Hoyle supplied the key saves and defenseman Adam Comrie the key goals in a 4-3 shootout win over the London Knights at the Sleeman Centre.
Hoyle, the 19-year-old rookie whose play has been inconsistent this season, made 34 saves in the game and stopped eight London shooters in the thrilling shootout.
Comrie, who Friday night admitted he hasn’t been the player he should be so far, tallied one in regulation then scored the deciding goal in the shootout.
“I didn’t play my best in Erie (last Wednesday) and it was good to get the win for the guys,” said Hoyle, who called Sunday’s win his best effort of the season.
Hoyle, who is now 2-1 in shootouts this season, said he enjoys being in the spotlight to end the game.
“I love being in them, I love the pressure,” he said. “You just want to make the shooters deke. Make them make the first move and then react to it.”
In the nine-round shootout, only player to beat him was London’s third shooter, Jared Knight. After that Hoyle made saves on the next six shooters.
“Matt was outstanding.” Storm coach Jason Brooks said. “I wouldn’t say he stole the game, but he came pretty damn close to stealing it. We need that.”
Connor Tresham, who had just one shift during the regulation and overtime, scored earlier in the shootout for Guelph before Comrie won it with a half-slapshot that beat London goaltender Michael Houser hip-high on the glove side.
While Comrie’s unorthodox choice of shot on the shootout seemed a little curious, it was a planned move.
“I noticed with the first bunch of guys that the goalie put his right pad down and left the other one up. It left the one side open,” he said. “When I brought my stick back, that’s exactly what he did.”
It was the third time Comrie has been involved in a shootout in his career and the first time he has scored.
Guelph trailed 3-1 midway through the second period before scoring twice to tie the game before the period was over.
Matt Kennedy and Taylor Beck also scored in regulation for Guelph. Beck also assisted on both the other goals.
Michael McDonald, Phil McRae and Nazem Kadri had the London goals in regulation
The news wasn’t all good for the Storm. Peter Holland will sit our 10 days to fully recuperate his shoulder injury and Michael Latta “is going to be out several weeks” with his shoulder injury, the coach said.
Tim Campbell missed yesterday with a mild concussion, but hopes to play next weekend. Evgeny Molotilov missed Sunday’s game with the flu.
The Storm hosts Ottawa Friday.