Jr. Sabres rally to beat Whitby, 4-3 SO

NORTH YORK, ON - Sep 8 : Ontario Junior Hockey League game between Buffalo Jr. Sabres and North York Rangers. Joseph Pianta #29 of the Buffalo Junior Sabres Hockey Club during second period game action. (Photo by Shawn Muir / OJHL Images)

WHITBY, ON – The Buffalo Jr. Sabres, less than 24 hours after taking a tough loss in Kingston, rallied from a three-goal deficit to force overtime and then emerge 4-3 winners in a shootout with the host Whitby Fury on Sunday.

After Mike Panowyk scored the opening goal for the Fury and Jeff Murray added two more to give the hosts their 3-0 lead, Nick DeSimone scored at the 12:31 mark of the second period to put the Jr. Sabres on the scoreboard. Ryan Schmelzer and Pat Egan provided the assists.

Schmelzer then cut the lead to one goal at the 18:02 mark of the second, assisted by DeSimone and Egan. Egan then evened the score with his third period goal, assisted by Schmelzer and Nico Gonzalez at the 12:26 mark.

Overtime couldn’t determine a winner, so it was off to the shootout. Darren McCormick shot first for Buffalo and succeeded. Following up, Pat Egan and Michael Ederer were unsuccessful but that didn’t matter, as Joseph Pianta stopped all three Fury shooters he faced to secure Buffalo’s 4-3 comeback win.

Pianta made 41 saves en route to the shootout.

The Jr. Sabres return to home action Tuesday evening as they host the Burlington Cougars at 7:30 p.m. on the Lexus Feature Rink in the Northtown Center at Amherst.

* * * *

Photo: Joseph Pianta file photo, courtesy OJHL Images.