The Kitchener Rangers were continuing their mastery over divisonal rivals Erie, with their 9th straight win against the Otters; a 7-3 thrasing, continuing last year's Otter slaughter of an eight-game season sweep of 2009-2010.
With one exception... free delicious winter smoothies?
With all the cheering and jeering that the Aud's spectators are known to dish to Rangers and visitors alike each Friday, a very new, and very different sound erupted from the stands when public address announcer Dave Schneider mentioned a Wendy's promotion that seemed to entice and delight the Rangers' faithful with unexpected glee.
Every stub-carrying attendee who mentions that the Rangers netted five against the Otters to Wendy's workers today receive a free small frosty.
Folks from Kitchener sure like their treats, don't they? Especially in the current economic climate, when they're free.
Take note Mr. Carl Zehr, the key to Kitchener's vote this coming election is in their stomachs.
It was fitting then, that the Otters would come to town when the Kitchener crowd receives a very rare, but nevertheless gratifying gratuity.
Kitchener and Erie stand in stark contrast in terms of marketing the on-ice product.
Erie can't seem to give their tickets away in a tough hockey market south of the border, let alone bait their fans with free provisions attached to their attendance.
Kitchener on the other hand has no trouble warming seats with bodies, who, judging by their audible reaction to Schneider's good tidings, apparently like to chill down once in awhile, even as October welcomed the area with a cool breeze Friday.
But even with the prospect of chilly snacks, the Rangers' following got their Friday-night filling of icy goodness in what has seemed to define the Rangers in the still-young season- a third period blitz.
Ryan Murphy (pictured), Gabriel Landeskog and Matt Tipoff all capitalized in the Rangers' new favourite frame to turn a 4-2 lead after 40 minutes into a 7-3 show-off.
Landeskog recorded two on the night, and Tipoff took a Ryan Murphy blueline blast off the chops- and converted the puck behind Otters keeper Chris Festarini via his martyred mug to cap off the seven goal outburst.
It was a night for the veterans to break out, as Jason Akeson, Andrew Crescenzi, and Michael Cattenaci all converted their firsts of the campaign.
Cattenaci and Akeson was akin to a chocolate and vanilla frosty, never failing to find each other last night, as each was threading no-look passes to the other all night long, with Akeson potting a slam-dunk back door pass from the Cat, and Catenacci wheeling for a highlight-reel, Matt Halischuk-esque, breakaway, backhand blitz in the first to put the Rangers ahead by two in the first.
David Shields, Anthony Luciani and Mitch Gaulton replied for the Otters, who drop to 1-3 on the year.
Don't look now, but the Kitchener crew have notched 18 goals in just their first three games.
That leads the Ontario Hockey League's Western Conference, tied with Sault Ste. Marie, who have played one more game than the Rangers.
The blueshirts are quickly proving that life without ex-snipers Jeremy Morin and Jeff Skinner isn't all doom and gloom that prognosticators had expected.
Tipoff, Landeskog, and Murphy are the emerging faces of the 2010-2011 season, and the return of either Morin and Skinner is quickly looking like the icing on an already structurally strong cake.
The Rangers will look to make it four straight to start the season when they face the red-hot Owen Sound Attack at the Bayshore Arena tomorrow night.