KITCHENER - Games aren't won and lost on paper, as the Guelph Storm found out Friday night at The Aud.
The eighth-place Kitchener Rangers came to work against the fourth place Storm, a squad boosted by a number of recent acquisitions, and downed them 4-3 in overtime.
"It's not going to be easy," said Storm coach/GM George Burnett.
"I guess if I have a concern with this group it's that they think there's going to be some easy nights and there are no easy nights in this league."
The Storm was playing its third road game in four nights, but Storm coach George Burnett wasn't going to use that as an excuse.
"I'm not going to make any excuses, they outworked us tonight and full marks to them," Burnett said of the Rangers, a team battling for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.
"We looked sluggish. We've got to get rested and make sure we've got more gas in our tank and more energy in our game."
The current Storm roster hasn't had the opportunity to have a full practice as a group yet.
"It's a busy time of the year and we've brought in a lot of new faces lately," Guelph's Nate Schnarr said.
"But we don't want to make excuses. That's a rival team and we wanted to come away with two points tonight."
Schnarr also looked forward to next week, when the team can hold some practices and start getting into a routine as a group.
"Once we get a week where we can finally practice together and get some chemistry together, that's going to be huge for us," he said.
Riley Damiani scored the winner on a set play 13 seconds into overtime.
Kitchener took the puck back into their own end and then the player Storm defenceman Sean Durzi was covering jumped onto the short end of the Kitchener bench and Damiani jumped out the far door 10 yards behind Durzi.
A long pass bounced over Durzi's skate and Damiani went in all alone on Nico Daws, undressing the Guelph goaltender with a deke before sliding it into the open net.
Guelph led 1-0 after the first period and it was tied 2-2 after two.
Isaac Langdon put Kitchener up early in the third, then Guelph's Isaac Ratcliffe tied it with 2:31 left in regulation.
It doesn't get any easier Sunday when the Storm concludes its long week with a 2 p.m. home game against the OHL's top ranked team, the Ottawa 67's.