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17-year-old Parsons' poise helps Rangers even series

Parsons stopped 37 shots and defenceman Jack Harper scored the winner. The Kitchener Rangers earned the split on the road before heading home for Game 3
Kitchener Rangers goaltender Jackson Parsons locks in.

Jackson Parsons knows he's only 17-years-old, but he doesn't play like it. 

In the second game of a back-to-back on the road, the Kitchener Rangers turned to their rookie goalie in Game 2 of Round 2, against the Windsor Spitfires. 

"Round 2, not many rookie goalies get to play," said Parsons. "I was definitely super excited."

You couldn't tell. He handled it like a pro. Parsons stopped 37 shots from the top team in the Western Conference. 

"It's a luxury for sure," said head coach Mike McKenzie of having two Number 1 goalies. "I think most coaches and general managers are happy when they have one really good guy and we have two guys we really trust back there. It's nice to have."

The Rangers got four different goal-scorers and stopped the Spitfires 4-2, with an empty-netter. 

But the story of the game was Parsons' poise under pressure. The moment wasn't too big for the 3rd round selection in 2020. 

"Honestly, I embrace it. I think it's so much fun getting to play against so many high-level players," said Parsons. "Whether you're playing against the first pace team, or the tenth pace team, it doesn't really matter. Your preparation is still the same,"

Wyatt Johnston, who led the Ontario Hockey League in points this year, is one of those high-level players. 

He had two points in Sunday's loss, giving him six in just two games. But, Kitchener forward Joseph Serpa is battling him, toe-to-toe. 

The Cambridge native had two points of his own, bringing his own total to six points in the series. 

Defenceman Jack Harper continues to take his game to another level. He scored the game-winner just past the halfway point of the third period. 

"He's been really good for us the last week or so, right back to the middle of the London series," said McKenzie. "He's creating offence, he's been solid defensively. His minutes have grown exponentially. He's been huge for us. He's added a different element to our backend."

With the series tied at one game a piece, Game 3 is Tuesday evening at The Aud. 

Pregame at 6:30 p.m. on City News 570 with Mike Farwell and Chris Pope. 

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