TOLEDO, Ohio – Down 2-1 after the first period, there was no panic in the Metro Jets.
Instead, the Jets stuck to the game plan and defeated the Toledo Cherokee 5-3 Friday night at the Team Toledo Ice House.
Hayden Winch tallied a goal and an assist and his power-play goal at 11:46 of the third period proved to be the game-winner.
“We played a strong game tonight on the sheet,” Jets coach-GM Justin Quenneville said. “Won puck battles, won foot races, outchanced and outshot them. But sometimes you play a hot goalie and teams get bounces. That was the case tonight and we needed the right response. Louis’ and Sawyer’s goals in the second were big, but Winchy’s game-winner was the difference, naturally, and I’m proud of the guys for gutting out two points against a tough team in their home barn.”
Louis Boudon recorded a goal and two assists, Dylan Naumovski, Griffin Sawyer and Metro captain Graham Day added goals and Andrew Kormos made 16 saves in picking up the win in the Jets crease.
“Tonight’s game was a hard-fought battle, but we won a lot of the small battles, which helped us out a lot, especially after being down a goal,” Winch said. “The two power-play goals (that Toledo scored in the first period) were two tough bounces that didn’t quite go our way, but good for them, they moved the puck well. We knew we could control the play 5-on-5, so we weren’t too worried about bouncing back. The game did get a little chippy, but we controlled our tempers and played well through it.”
Toledo captain Tristin Snyder scored twice with an assist, Alex Syring added a goal and two assists and goaltender Roman Malkov finished with 51 saves.
The Jets now come home Saturday night to play the West Michigan Wolves at Fraser Hockeyland at 7 p.m.
Streaming of the game will be available on www.hockeytv.com.
“Tomorrow against West Michigan, we’re expecting for it to be another battle from them as the last series got chippy,” noted Winch. “We obviously need to be more controlled in some areas, but all around, we’re looking forward to another fun game.”