January 28, 2018
5:24 PM EST
By Steven Ellis
It wasn’t the start they wanted, but the North York Rangers took home the 4-3 double-overtime victory thanks to a two-goal night from Grayden Gottschalk.
At 2:16, the Royals found themselves leading the contest after Bain Cunningham took advantage of a giveaway in the Rangers zone, taking JT Entelisano’s feed before beating Colby Muise for the 1-0 goal.
But the Rangers wouldn’t leave the first period without putting something in the back of the net. At 18:14, Davis Park made an incredible pass to Grayden Gottschalk at the side of the net, with the former Oshawa Generals forward tapping home the puck to the right of Nate McDonald to tie the battle up at one each.
The Davis Park show continued in the second period, with the hard-nosed winger scoring the only goal of the period. At 7:07, Nick Leshuk took advantage of a bad turnover in front of the Markham net before sending the pass to Park. Park made no mistake knocking it in past McDonald, giving them the 2-1 lead heading into the second intermission.
Just after the five-minute mark in the third, the Rangers had a 3-1 lead. Noah Jordan would extend North York’s advantage when he backhanded a puck past a defender and McDonald to continue his strong season.
But the Royals would score one more to push some life into Markham’s step. Kosta Likourezos would find a way to get the puck past Colby Muise on the rush, making it 3-2.
The Royals tied it up at three with 10:43 to go. After Muise made a huge save, Sam Marit found a way to score by just squeaking it past the Rangers netminder, making a tight game even tighter.
The contest would require overtime to declare the victor, something that seemed to be a trend as the season wore on. Gottschalk was the man of the hour, scoring in close from the high slot to give the Rangers the 4-3 victory in a wild game at the Herb.
The Rangers get a few days off before playing the Toronto Patriots on Saturday on the road. The next home game will be North York’s annual Pink in the Rink contest, a 3:00 PM start against Newmarket next Sunday at the Herb.
Photo by Tim Bates / OJHL Images