Kitchener Rangers season comes to an end after being swept by London

The Kitchener Rangers’ playoff run was ended on Thursday night as the London Knights took the sweep and the series win with a 4-3 victory in game four of the second round.

London took an early lead 39 seconds into the game with a goal by London center Jacob Julien. Carson Rehkopf would get the blue shirts on the board and tie the game a few minutes later thanks to assist from Hunter Brzustewicz.

The lead would not last long as London would score three more goals in the second, including two more by Julien, giving him his second hat trick of the series. Trent Swick would score one before the end of the second to bring the game within two, as well as another near the end of the third to bring the score within one. However, it would not be enough, even with Kitchener outshooting London 12-5 in the third.

Filip Mešár lead the team in points during their playoff run with 16 and Eduard Šalé lead the team in goals with five. Jackson Parsons started for all 10 games for the Rangers, finishing with a 3.73 goals-against average and an 0.878 save percentage.

CityNews 570’s Colour Commentator, Paul Fixter, said despite the sweep the Rangers put up a good series. He noted the competitiveness, battle level and effort was “tremendous.”

“In the end, the result isn’t what we wanted. But to watch and witness the effort these guys put in… I think that’s magnificent and that really bodes well on a go-forward basis,” said Fixter.

Thursday’s game was also the last for three overage Rangers players; Matthew Sop, Mitchell Martin and Simon Motew. Martin said it was a tough way to go out, and wishes he was here longer than three seasons.

“I’ll never forget the guys in there,” Martin said after the game. “I’ve made the best friends I’ve ever had and we’re brothers for life. Again, It’s tough to go out this way, but I don’t think there’s a better place in the country to play junior hockey.”

Kitchener was not the only team to be swept on Thursday. The Oshawa Generals defeated the Ottawa 67’s 4-1 and North Bay upended the Sudbury Wolves 5-0. Both of those teams will meet in the OHL Eastern Conference Final.

London will play the winner of the Saginaw-Sault Ste. Marie series, which currently stands at 2-2.

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