Friday, March 25, 2011

Coyotes 4 Rebels 2

(Osoyoos leads series 3-2)

The unlikeliest of heroes tonight for the Coyotes, as Matt Guerts rifled home a wrist shot on a solo effort just under 7 minutes into the third period.

The 20 year-old beat a sprawling defenseman and lifted the puck over the shoulder of Alex Ross to break a 2-2 tie. Josh Gray, Thierry Martine and Brock Anderson also tallied for the winners, while Anthony DeLong and Diego Bartlett replied for Castlegar.

Ross made 34 saves in a losing cause, while Kyle Laslo stopped 26 of 28 Rebel shots including a late DeLong breakaway. To me, Game 5 was the best game Osoyoos has played in the finals, which is noteworthy considering the fact they were missing Taylor House, Jake Newton, Stefan Jensen (injuries) and Corey Allen (suspension). The Coyotes were able to put together their largest shot margin of the series, and frustrated Castlegar in their own zone, particularly in the first 40 minutes.

Castlegar's Taylor Anderson was a late scratch for the visitors, with Kwinn Mazzilli seeing his first action of the finals on the Rebels' fourth line.

So there you have it, the backs are now up against the wall. Tomorrow's Game 6, which was always going to be the last home game of the season, is no longer a championship clincher but rather a fight for survival. The Complex has been kind to the Rebels, with only one of the team's seven playoff losses taking place there. The louder, the busier, the better.

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