PLYMOUTH, Mich. - Matt Hackett stopped 34 shots and Vern Cooper scored the game-winning goal in the third period as the Plymouth Whalers upset the Windsor Spitfires 2-1 in Ontario Hockey League action Wednesday evening.
Hackett, a former Spitfire and the nephew of former NHL goalie Jeff Hackett, came up big twice in the third period, stopping a breakaway by OHL leading scorer Taylor Hall with 11:28 left and then shutting the door on Toronto prospect Dale Mitchell's breakaway with less than three minutes remaining.
With the Spitfires on a power play and the goalie pulled in favour of an extra attacker, Hall rang a snap shot off the crossbar with 40 seconds left.
Windsor (22-3-0-0), the Canadian Hockey League's top-rated team all season, lost for just the third time this year while Plymouth (8-12-3-0) was in the OHL Western Conference basement beginning the night.
Cooper's seventh goal of the season was a slick individual effort, beating Spitfire Harry Young in the right corner before walking in front and snapping a shot five-hole past overage goalie Andrew Engelage at 10:57 of the third.
Spitfires forward Eric Wellwood and Whalers defenceman Michal Jordan traded first period goals setting up the third period dramatics.
Engelage finished with 30 saves.
In Sault Ste. Marie, Dylan King scored in overtime as the Greyhounds beat the Sarnia Sting 2-1.
Michael Fine also scored for the Greyhounds (13-11-1-0).
Chris Beauchamp replied for the Sting (12-11-2-1).
Cody St. Jacques made 38 saves for the Greyhounds while Dan Spence stopped 18 shots for the Sting.