February 23, 2020 / 4:28 AM / a month ago

Zamboni driver minds the net as Hurricanes beat Maple Leafs

Feb 22, 2020; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Jake Gardiner (51) skates against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Scotiabank Arena. Carolina defeated Toronto. Mandatory Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

(Reuters) - The Carolina Hurricanes won an National Hockey League game with a Zamboni driver in the net on Saturday.

After both Hurricanes goalies were injured in the game against the Maple Leafs in Toronto, David Ayres, who works as a Zamboni driver for the minor league Toronto Marlies, came on to serve as Carolina’s emergency goalie in their 6-3 victory.

“It was awesome. Time of my life out there,” the 42-year-old told reporters.

Although Ayres had served as an emergency goalie in minor league games, the contest was his NHL debut. He stopped eight of 10 shots he faced after entering the game in the second period with the Hurricanes ahead 4-1.

Zambonis are resurfacing vehicles used to clean and smooth ice surfaces at hockey games and other events.

Reporting by Gene Cherry in Salvo, North Carolina; Editing by Kim Coghill

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