Saturday, April 01, 2006

Sestito's two goals propel Plymouth

Tom Sestito (above) scored two goals in 14 seconds in the second period to snap a 1-1 tie and the Plymouth Whalers went on to defeat the Windsor Spitfires, 3-2, in Game 5 Saturday night before 2,842 at the Compuware Sports Arena.

Plymouth now leads the best-of-seven OHL Western Conference quarterfinal series three games to two.

Plymouth captain John Vigilante (above) scored the other Whalers' goal. Mitch Maunu scored in the first period for Windsor, while Bryan Bickell scored his team-leading fifth of the playoffs in the third period for the Spitfires.

Plymouth outshot Windsor, 39-28.

For the fifth straight game in the series, Windsor scored first when Maunu tapped home a rebound at 2:37 of the first period. Plymouth tied the game at 6:55 of the first period when Vigilante scored in tight quarters in front of the Windsor goal by netminder Anthony Guadagnolo. Plymouth dominated the first period in outshooting Windsor, 17-8.

Sestito gave Plymouth a 2-1 lead at 3:07 of the second period when he took Derek Merlini’s pass in neutral territory on the right wing, moved into the Windsor zone and beat Guadagnolo with a hard shot from the right face-off dot. Sestito then scored at 3:21 when he took Andrew Fournier’s pass from the right wing in the Windsor zone into the slot. Sestito faked a shot from the forehand and scored on backhand by Guadagnolo.

Plymouth goaltender Justin Peters stopped a penalty shot by Windsor’s Mickey Renaud at 6:42 of the second period to keep the score 3-1 Plymouth. Plymouth outshot Windsor, 16-6 in the second period and continued to lead 3-1 after forty minutes.

Windsor took advantage of three power plays in the third period to start to turn the game around, but Peters and the Whalers penalty killers competed hard. Bickell cut the Plymouth lead to 3-2 at 17:24 of the third period when he tucked a hard shot through traffic under the bar by Peters.

Windsor pulled Guadagnolo with 28 seconds left in regulation, but could not find the equalizer.

Windsor hosts Plymouth in game six of this series on Sunday night at 7:00 p.m. at Windsor Arena.

If a seventh and deciding game is needed in the Plymouth-Windsor series, it will be played Tuesday night at 7:30 p.m. at the Compuware Sports Arena.

Photos by Walt Dmoch.

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