Flint, Mich. – Jake Durham recorded three goals, Eric Uba tallied a three-point game and Kyle Harris, Ethan Keppen and Hakon Nilsen all lit-the-lamp for the Firebirds en-route to a 7-4 victory over the Sarnia Sting in front of “School Day Game” audience of 3,534 fans at the Dort Federal Credit Union Event Center Wednesday.
Sarnia’s Mitch Eliot scored back-to-back goals within 24 seconds in similar fashion to earn the Sting an early lead. At 6:32, Eliot swatted a puck down out of mid-air to keep the play alive before joining the rush and converting on a pass from Anthony Salinitri backdoor. Then, Eliot increased Sarnia’s lead to two on a pass from Ryan McGregor backdoor at 6:56.
Jake Durham would score his first-of-three at 8:25 of the first period. From behind-the-net, Dellandrea dished the puck to the slot where Durham collected on his backhand and roofed it top-shelf past Ethan Langevin.
From the deep in the Sarnia zone on the left side, Ty Dellandrea made a skilled pass to Durham at the right circle who fired the puck into the net farside at 14:41, tying the contest 2-2. Ryan Bangs earned his first-of-two assists on the play. Flint led in shots 14-7 after 20 minutes.
The Firebirds would earn their first lead of the game at 9:57 of the middle frame. Harris skated into the Sarnia zone on the left-wing side. Harris pulled the puck to his backhand and jammed it past Langevin. Eric Uba and Fedor Gordeev (Toronto Maple Leafs) picked up the assists.
Then, Salinitri picked of a pass while shorthanded in the neutral zone and scored on a breakaway, glove-side, past Flint’s Luke Cavallin to tie the contest 3-3 with 2:27 remaining in the second period.
Durham would secure the hat trick by receiving a pass from Ryan Bangs at the point. Durham used the Sarnia defender as a screen and buried gloveside with 1:02 to play in the second.
In the final frame, Eric Uba sent a shot into the net five hole from the right circle that Ethan Keppen was awarded an assist on. Then, Hakon Nilsen Firebirds a quick release slapshot in from the right point at 14:28 to earn Flint a 6-3 lead.
Sean Josling would score Sarnia’s fourth and final goal with 3:03 remaining on the left side of the goal. Ethan Keppen added the empty net tally at with 2:15 on the clock.
Luke Cavallin earned the victory making 23 saves on 27 shots. Flint was 1-for-4 on the power-play and 3-for-4 on the penalty-kill. The Firebirds won 35 face-offs compared to Sarnia’s 31.
Next Game: Flint is back in action this Friday for the Firebirds’ annual “Military Appreciation Night.” Puck drop is set for 7 p.m. (ET) against the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds. All active military personnel and veterans receive complimentary tickets courtesy of HAP, Comcast Business, DM Burr & The View Newspaper Group. The Firebirds will be wearing special white camouflage military themed jerseys that fans can bid on in a live jersey auction immediately following the game.
Single game tickets for all Firebirds games are $12 Bronze, $16 Silver, $20 Gold and $26 VIP seating (Seating Chart). All seats are reserved / assigned seating. Fans can purchase tickets by calling (810) 744-0580, in-person at the Dort Federal Event Center Box Office or online at ticketmaster.com here.
Photo Credit: Todd Boone / Flint Firebirds
For more information:
Director of Broadcasting & Communications
Flint Firebirds Hockey Club