With two contests remaining in 2011, the door is still open for more noteworthy nights, but GuelphStorm.com looks back at the year that was with the five top individual performances of 2011. Between December 23 – 27, GuelphStorm.com will list the top five performances in chronological order…
Sunday, April 3rd… Saginaw Spirit at Guelph Storm
Michael Latta (3 G / 1 A / 4 Pts)
If it was going to be the final game in a terrific junior career for forward Michael Latta, he wasn’t going to go down without a fight.
In 11 playoff contests between 2010 and 2011, the St. Clements native proved that he was at his best in clutch situations with 19 points in 11 games. However, he saved the best performance for last in Game Six of the Storm’s series versus the Saginaw Spirit where he nearly singlehandedly pushed the series to a seventh game.
During the game’s opening twenty minutes, Latta scored twice but each time the Spirit had an answer to leave the game tied at two. Then after a stretch of just over 16 minutes, it looked like all hope was lost for Guelph as the visitors struck for four straight goals to leave the Storm down 6-2. After Sam Lofquist scored with 12:03 remaining, Latta picked up his first assist of the night on Peter Holland’s powerplay goal. With hopes of a stunning comeback energizing the crowd, Latta struck again with his third of the evening to lift the Storm within one at 18:04. In the dying seconds, Latta and his teammates would have chances to tie, but couldn’t convert eventually falling 6-5 in the game and 4-2 in the series.
Now in his first AHL season, Latta continues to show that the bigger the challenge, the bigger the performance. The rookie forward currently ranks second on the Milwaukee Predators in points with 19 in 26 contests and for fans that had the pleasure of watching him in a Storm uniform, it’s no surprise with performances like Game Six on April 3rd.