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Guelph Storm turns in a stinker

A 5-1 loss on home ice to the Kitchener Rangers left many, including coach Chad Wiseman, wondering how the team could play so poorly a day after playing so well

It wasn't the Guelph Storm's worst loss of the season, but it might have been the most disappointing.

Fresh on the heels of an excellent win over Erie the night before, the Storm came out flat and stayed flat Saturday night, being completely outplayed in a 5-1 loss to the Kitchener Rangers.

You would have expected much better from a team coming off a big win, playing the only other team below you in the conference standings and in front of a home-ice crowd of 3,984.

"You'd think that you would build off the momentum of the way we finished (Friday) night and carry it into tonight. We were outworked and out-competed in our own rink," said Storm coach Chad Wiseman. "Not that that's acceptable any night, but not in your own rink."

He wasn't even going to try and sugar coat this one.

"We were outworked and we were out-competed. We didn't get pucks in behind their defence. We had turnovers in the neutral zone early. I don't think we played with any passion. You can draw up all the structure and systems in the world, but if you're not going to compete, you're not going to have any success."

No need to name names of who didn't play well. You just had to look at the lineup sheet.

"It would be hard to look down the lineup and find somebody who followed the plan and could look in the mirror and say they had compete and work ethic tonight. That's something they have to figure out as individuals and as a group," Wiseman said.

Guelph didn't get its first shot on net in the game until almost nine minutes into the first period, but still found themselves down just 1-0 after the first period.

Time to regroup and come out flying in the second? Nope.

Kitchener pumped four goals past Jacob Oster in the second, leading to a Dixon Grimes appearance in the third.

The Rangers, who had a pair of shorthanded goals and two on the power play, were led by Francesco Pinelli's hat trick.

Cam Allen broke Marcus Vandenberg's shutout bid late in the third with a power play goal.

Danny Zhilkin missed Saturday's game with a minor injury picked up late in Friday's win over Erie. KItchener was also missing a pair of its big guns in Filip Mesar and Mitch Martin.

Guelph has a busy week ahead: Tuesday in Kitchener, Friday at home to Owen Sound, Saturday in Owen Sound and then Sunday at home to Ottawa.

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Tony Saxon

About the Author: Tony Saxon

Tony Saxon has had a rich and varied 30 year career as a journalist, an award winning correspondent, columnist, reporter, feature writer and photographer.
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