The London Knights gave a salute to their crowd at Budweiser Gardens and with a wink of an eye and the nod of a head, they were off on an 11-day holiday break after a 4-1 win over Guelph on Friday.
The Knights came out firing pucks at former London goalie Liam Herbst like they were handing out Tim Cards at the office on Christmas Eve. Six pucks were stopped, but the seventh one went in as Robert Thomas found Victor Mete flying in from the left point and the Canadiens’ prospect banged the puck home for a 1-0 lead at 8:32.
A Guelph man advantage tied the game at 14:34 as Red Wings’ draft pick, Givani Smith jammed in a rebound on a second whack, beating rookie London goaltender, Jordan Kooy, who was making his third start of the season. Kooy calmly kicked aside 30 pucks, making several big stops. In three starts for the Knights, Kooy has allowed just four goals.
Thomas helped to put the Knights ahead 2-1 in the second period, as he carried in across the Guelph blue line and pushed a backhand to the edge of the crease as Alex Formenton went to the net. Herbst tried to get a glove on the puck, but it came free and Formenton backhanded it in.
Chris Martenet got a gift early in the third period as he got an open look and made no mistake, rifling a puck from the top of the left circle, high into the Storm net for his first goal of the season and 11th of his career.
Brandon Crawley added an empty netter with less than a minute to go to seal the win.
The Knights are two games shy of the halfway mark and have a record of 22-5-2-3 and sit one point back of the Erie Otters for first overall.
London is now off until December 28th when they will play host to the Oshawa Generals at Budweiser Gardens at 7 PM. For tickets, call 519-681-0800 x1, visit the Knights Armouries or go online to www.londonknights.com