You never like to see an official affect the outcome of a game.
But that's what happened this past Friday in Owen Sound.
The OHL official working the Rangers' penalty box refused to let rookie Justin Bailey back on to the ice after his penalty had expired. By the time the winger managed to let himself out, an additional six seconds had gone by and the Attack had tied the game 1-1.
There was only 5:03 left in the game. Getting to overtime gave the Attack, who the Rangers are chasing in the standings, a point even though they went on to lose 2-1 in a shootout.
Rangers' boss Steve Spott has contacted the league for an explanation. The Attack put the official back to work in the penalty box the next game.
So what does it all mean for the Rangers?
Well, the shady goal and result stand. Hopefully, the OHL will address the loophole in the rule book during the off-season.
As for this season, it just puts more pressure on Kitchener to win.
The team is fourth but can still finish fifth (or lower) or jump up to third with six games left to play. A victory tonight over Guelph would be huge but the Storm has defeated Kitchener in its past two games and is on a three-game winning streak.
It all makes for dramatic hockey tonight at the Aud.
It's a familiar scene for the Rangers:
Matt Puempel-Radek Faksa-Justin Bailey
Ben Thomson-Tobias Rieder-Josh Leivo
Brent Pedersen-Matia Marcantuoni-Derek Schoenmakers
Domenic Alberga-Curtis Meighan-Eric Ming
Ben Fanelli-Frank Corrado
Evan McEneny-Ryan Murphy
Jared Gilbert-Max Iafrate
Joel Vienneau (27-15-2-7) starts.
Scott Kosmachuk-Tanner Richard-Zack Mitchell
Brock McGinn-Hunter Garlent-Jason Dickinson
Tyler Bertuzzi-Cody McNaughton-Justin Auger
Patrick Watling-Robby Fabbri-Ryan Horvat
Andrey Pedan-Saverio Posa
Zac Leslie-Brock Beukeboom
Ben Harpur-Matt Finn
Garret Sparks (33-14-0-4) starts.
Kitchener winger Josh Leivo has inked a three-year entry level contract with the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Buds selected the Innisfil native in the third round of the 2011 draft.
Leivo signed the deal yesterday after meeting with Leafs' GM David Nonis at the ACC.
"It was exciting," said Leivo. "It's something I'll never forget."
Leivo said he was eager to get his NHL career started, but that his first priority right now is the Kitchener Rangers.
- A generous amount of scouts at the game tonight. Pittsburgh's Bill Guerin among the lot in the pressbox.
- Barrie, London and Windsor have made the short list to host the 2014 Memorial Cup.
- Referee Ryan Carroll tripped over the red carpet set out for intermission contests during the first break and left the game, leaving Scott Ferguson as the lone ref. Carroll returned midway through the second period.
- Some long overdue goals: Radek Faksa with his first since Dec. 1, Derek Schoenmakers got his first in 16 games while Brent Pedersen broke a seven-game scoreless skid.
- Centre Josh Sterk has been a healthy scratch for the past three games but will play Friday, according to Spott.
- Guelph goalie Garret Sparks was solid but not spectacular. The netminder has started the past 22 games for the Storm. Though, he was replaced tonight early in the third after allowing five goals.
- Won't be surprised is Storm d-man Zac Leslie gets drafted this year. He was passed over his first time around.
- Guelph had ample opportunity to take this game but went 1-for-9 on the PP.
- There was an eerie feeling in the Rangers' dressing room after the game, a result of allowing three third period goals and almost coughing up a game that was well in hand.
- Kitchener is notorious for staying out of the box, but has taken 16 minors in the past two games.
JB's top three Rangers: Ryan Murphy, Ben Thomson, Ben Fanelli