Knights finally win a shootout

RYAN PYETTE -- London Free Press

, Last Updated: 9:19 AM ET

With a couple of nifty breakaways, the London Knights managed to solve two major problems that have haunted them all season.

They finally won a shootout and they finally knocked off the Guelph Storm.

London forwards Dylan Hunter and Rob Schremp beat former teammate Ryan MacDonald on shifty moves and Knights goalie Adam Dennis shut the door at his end for a 3-2 shootout victory before 9,090 last night at the John Labatt Centre.

To mark London's first-ever shootout victory and first win in three tries over Guelph this year, Schremp pulled off a deke that looked similar to a recent Sidney Crosby goal and then performed a stick-paddling celebration known as "the kayak" to cement his appearance on the evening highlight reels.

"It's just a shootout move and it's a good one. I wasn't imitating anybody," Schremp said. "(About the kayak), people get cheesed off about everything in this league so I don't care if they're mad about it or not. I've done it before. I had fun doing it and that's what counts."

The Storm chose to take the high road and ignore that it even happened.

"I didn't see it," Guelph head coach Dave Barr said of Schremp's celebration. "The one thing about Rob Schremp is he is consistent with the way he expresses himself and that's good. The game needs guys like that."

London, which had lost its first two shootout games this season -- including Guelph's last visit to the JLC on Nov. 17 -- required the extra work because it was unable to hold onto a third-period lead for the second time in three games. With London clinging to a 2-1 lead, former Knight and Woodstock native Ryan Pottruff tied the game with 4:52 left in regulation.

"We got to the shootout and we finally won one, which was nice," Schremp said. "Guelph always works hard and they always seem to play us tough. (MacDonald) always seems to stand on his head against us. They don't take a lot of penalties and they play a team game."

Guelph outshot London 26-8 in the third period and carried the play but the Knights had a couple of good chances in overtime that they couldn't convert.

"If we didn't get a goal in the third, it would've been unfair," Barr said.

"Our guys always get up for games in London because they know it's a great barn to play in. There's going to be 9,000 people in the stands and this time, they knew they were going to be on TV."

London native and Guelph rookie Leigh Salters scored his first OHL goal, finishing off a nice two-on-one break on a pass from former London draft pick Brandon Biggers.

Pottruff drew the second assist on the goal and said all the former Knights and Londoners on Guelph always want to play well in return trips to the Forest City.

"You always want to stick it to those guys and steal points from them," Pottruff said. "We have a lot of guys on this team that want to come back here and have a big night. Every time we come here, there's a good feeling. We're pretty confident when we come here."

The Knights played without forwards David Bolland, who left for the Canadian world junior tryout camp in Vancouver this morning, and Sergei Kostitsyn, who is back in Belarus to help the host country at the world junior hockey B Pool championships.

Guelph operated without defenceman Ryan Parent, who is with Bolland at the Canadian camp.

London's Frank Rediker missed his sixth straight game while he recovers from a sore knee and Robbie Drummond sat out his second tilt in a row with a leg injury.

Kelan Herr, who usually suits up with the Stratford Cullitons of the Midwestern Junior B Hockey League, played his third game of the season for the Knights.

GAME GLANCE

Knights 3, Storm 2

(London wins shootout 2-0)

London goals: Jordan Foreman, Steve Ferry

Guelph goals: Leigh Salters, Ryan Pottruff

Next: London heads into the Christmas break with two games at the John Labatt Centre -- Friday against Sudbury at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday against Mississauga at 7 p.m.


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