Monsters roar back for OT win

Marty Sertich tallied a power play goal 3:58 into overtime as Lake Erie rallied back from a 2-0 deficit to claim a 3-2 road win over North Division-leading Hamilton at Copps Coliseum on Monday night.

The Monsters avenged a 3-1 loss in Hamilton on Friday and moved to 9-2-0-1 in their last 12 contests. Lake Erie, which was eight games below .500 (9-17-0-3) as recently as Dec. 18, has now pulled within one victory of the break-even mark (18-19-0-4).

Monday’s contest did not start well for the visitors, as the Bulldogs took a 2-0 lead into the first intermission on power play goals by Mikael Johansson and Brock Trotter.

But Ryan Stoa answered with a power play strike of his own 4:57 into the third period before scoring again at even strength to tie it at 9:23 of the third period. Stoa now shows 13 goals in his last 17 games and a team-leading 17 tallies on the season.

Sertich’s marker was his eighth of the season and third game-winner. T.J. Hensick assisted on all three Lake Erie goals, and Brian Willsie picked up a pair of helpers.

Monsters goaltender Tyler Weiman earned the victory with 27 saves on 29 shots, as his club moved five points back of Abbotsford for the fourth and final playoff spot in the North Division.

Hamilton’s four-game winning streak came to an end, but the Bulldogs have still garnered at least one point in five straight contests.