Please visit the links and support my friends and supporters!!!

Please visit the links and support my friends and supporters!!!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Dogs score late to top Caps 3-2



In an extreme reversal of fortune from the last two games when the Bulldogs scored within the first minute on back-to-back nights it was the Capitals coming out flying in this one, drawing a penalty just nine seconds into the game. They would find the net just eight seconds into the power play when newly aquired Darien Craighead chipped a rebound off the post and in from in tight after a first save by Nathan Warren. Assists on the goal went to Rylan Bechtel and Brayden Gelsinger at the 17 second mark of the first. Despite the horrific start, the Dogs would battle back to control the play and get some chances around Lane Michasiw. They would eventually earn a power play chance of their own that they capitalized on where they worked the puck around the attacking zone for close to the full two minutes before finally finding the net with six seconds left in the man advantage as Evan Tironese took a pass from Scott Clark at the right point where he put a puck wide of the net - it looked intentionally wide to me - and off the end boards and out the opposite side of the net where Chris Schutz fired it home into the open side before Michasiw could get over to make it 1-1 at the 9:24 mark of the first. The Dogs would have several good looks on the rush to build the lead throughout the period, but they couldn't connect. The Capitals would have a great chance to take a lead to the room on a last second breakaway chance for Jesse Neher, but Nathan Warren read the play perfectly and knocked it away with a poke-check to preserve the 1-1 score after one, with the Dogs leading the shots 15-11.

The Bulldogs got off to a better start in the second, and once again carried the better of the play through the midway point of the frame but again they couldn't find the net despite coming painfully close as both Scott Clark and Brett Stewart rang shots off the post that stayed out. The Bulldogs would take the lead for the first time in the game just after the media time out when Josh Adkins picked up a stretch pass at the Capitals line and made a nifty move to make a defender miss to create an odd-man rush. Adkins would drive the net and put a cross-ice pass onto the tape of Everett Putz that he deflected on goal, only to have Lane Michasiw come up with a circus save to somehow keep it out. He couldn't find the rebound though, as Dylan Haugen drove the net and poked it home to make it 2-1 at 11:08 of the second. The Dogs would continue to put lots of puck on net, but couldn't beat Michasiw. The Capitals would push back hard in the last two minutes of the period trying for the equalizer, but Nathan Warren was solid to protect the lead as the Dogs led 2-1 after two, and outshot the Capitals 20-11 on the period for a 35-22 advantage after 40 minutes.

The third period saw the Dogs again continue to get plenty of pucks on net, but they didn't generate many second chances and there wasn't much emotion in the game. The Capitals would change that just short of seven minutes into the period when Darien Craighead snuck past the Dogs defence and raced in on a breakaway where he went backhand and banked it off the pads of Warren and in to make it 2-2 from Brayden Gelsinger and Skylar Pacheco at 6:48 of the third period. The game would tighten up after that, with not much in the way of glorious offensive chances for either side. With overtime looming, the Dogs would get the game winner on a somewhat broken play as Evan Tironese kept the puck in at the Caps line where it was found by Josh Adkins. He would fire a shot at the net from the slot that deflected off a Capital and on net, where it was stopped by Michasiw. He couldn't control the rebound as Dylan Haugen scored his second of the game, somewhat similar to his first, cleaning up the crease to make it 3-2 Dogs with 1:24 to play. The Dogs had a glorious chance to put the game away just seconds later, as Kurt Gosselin picked up a pass and raced in on a breakaway, only to have Michasiw make the save. To make matters worse, Gosselin would be ruled to have carried into Michasiw resulting in a Capitals power play with less than a minute to play. The Caps would pull their goalie to make it a 6 on 4 advantage, but the Dogs killed off the clock and didn't give up any chances as time ran out for the 3-2 Final.

Shots favoured the Bulldogs 50-27 with Nathan Warren picking up the win while Lane Michasiw took the loss. The Dogs went 1 for 2 on the power play, while the Capitals went 1 for 3.

The Dogs are on the road tomorrow as they visit the Chiefs in Chilliwack.

Hammer

Line up Caps at Dogs


Bulldogs host Capitals tonight to kick off another three game weekend




Another busy weekend begins tonight for the Bulldogs (6-5-0-0, 2nd Island) as they host the Cowichan Valley Capitals (2-11-0-0, 5th Island) for the second Friday in a row, and third meeting between the teams in the last eight days, after the Bulldogs swept last weekends home-and-home set 7-3 and 8-1.  The Bulldogs will head over to the Lower Mainland tomorrow to visit the Chiefs in Chilliwack before they visit the Langley Rivermen Sunday afternoon.

The Dogs were last in action Sunday afternoon where they saw their win streak snapped at four with a 5-4 loss to the Prince George Spruce Kings, while the Capitals haven't played since they hosted the Bulldogs last Saturday.

The Bulldogs have had a week now to think about an afternoon of missed opportunities and being so close yet so far in the loss to Prince George in a game that they never led, while the Caps have had a week to stew about the two tough losses the Dogs handed them last weekend.

While the scores were indeed lopsided, I was impressed with how hard the Capitals battled despite how tough things have been for them and how things went in both those games - conceding goals less than a minute in and just over a minute in on both nights, falling into 3-0 holes both nights. On both nights they answered quickly to make it a 3-1 game, and kept it that way for a spell as well. I sure hope the Dogs don't take the Capitals lightly, because if they do they will most certainly end up on the wrong end of the score. It's natural to expect or prepare for less when it was easy last game, or when a team is at the bottom of the standings, but at this level of hockey that's not a good recipe for success. Look at Sunday afternoon for example. Prince George was playing their fourth game in five days and had been on the road since Wednesday. Yet they knew how tough it would be and fought to take two points home. Here's hoping that stung the Dogs and they learned a bit of a lesson.


It should be another good one on Van Isle Ford Bulldogs Hockey on 93.3 The Peak FM with our pregame show getting on the air at 6:45 and the puck hitting the ice at 7:00 with Bruce MacDonald providing the colour and analysis and Dan Tisserand compiling team and player stats while I will call the play-by-play.


If you aren't in radio listening range of 93.3 The Peak FM you can listen/watch the game by:


Listening Live on your computer: www.933thepeak.com
Listening Live on your SmartPhone : www.tunein.com/mobile/
Watching Live on your computer/SmartPhone www.fasthockey.com

Tonight's 2nd Intermission guest is Jacob Bestebroer, Colour Commentator and Director of Scouting for the Chilliwack Chiefs, who the Dogs visit tomorrow.

Hammer


Thursday, October 23, 2014

First goals.....

A couple of firsts from the game in Duncan on Saturday, as Troy Dobbs and Josh Harvey scored their first goals!




Sunday, October 19, 2014

Dogs win streak stopped at four, Spruce Kings pick up 5-4 win


It was once again a great start to the game for the Bulldogs, as they almost scored on the opening shift. They would draw a penalty shortly afterwards after a great hit by Garrett Halls resulted in a Spruce Kings retaliation. The Dogs came close again on the power play with a delayed penalty coming but they couldn't connect. They had several good looks on the short 5 on 3 and ensuing power play, but the Spruce Kings did a good job to block shots to keep it scoreless despite the Dogs running up an early 5-0 lead in shots. Prince George would get a power play opportunity of their own shortly afterwards, and they looked everything like the 3rd ranked power play in the league as they worked the puck around the Dogs zone for a full two minutes. Billy Christopolous would make a ridiculous save on a backdoor one-timer chance for Chad Staley but the Dogs couldn't get the puck out as the Spruce Kings continued to work it around. A split-second after the power play elapsed they would find the net to make it 1-0 on a beautiful set up to the slot that was finished off by Chad Staley with top corner, blocker-side shot. Assists on the play went to Jake Lebrun and Jeremiah Luedtke at the 8:40 mark of the first. The Dogs would get the equalizer with just over five minutes to play in the period when Brett Stewart carried the puck out of his own zone and through centre into Prince George territory before dishing off to Evan Tironese. He would get the puck behind the goal line for Scott Clark who won a battle and centered it to Chris Schutz who fired a quick wrister far-side past the blocker of Alex Brooks-Potts to make it 1-1 at the 14:47 mark of the first. The Spruce Kings would have back-to-back power plays to end the period looking to take the lead back, but the Dogs penalty killers came up big to keep it tied. Shots favoured the Dogs 11-10 after one.

The Spruce Kings would take the lead back again for the second time in the game on another power play early in the second as Chad Staley threw a cross-crease pass that hit Jake LeBrun and went in past Christopolous. Adam Clements also drew a helper on the play at 2:58 of the second. The Dogs would answer back five minutes later to tie it up at 2-2 when Scott Clark just plain threw the puck on net from the left wing boards at a sharp angle and it bounced off the skates of Brooks-Potts and in. Assists went to Chris Schutz and Brett Stewart at 7:12. The Dogs couldn't build on the momentum though as the Spruce Kings took the lead back for the third time on the rush as Cooper Leitch drove the net and found a loose puck on a net drive by Marco Ballarin that he slid into the open side. Rider Stoglin also drew an assist on the play at the 11:29 mark. The Dogs would get a great chance to try and find the equalizer late in the period when they were awarded a two-man advantage for just under two minutes in duration but they couldn't connect as the buzzer sounded to end the period. Darian Henry would be penalized at the buzzer, resulting in a 4 on 3 advantage for 35 seconds to start the third period. Shots in the period favoured Prince George 14-11 for a two period advantage for the Spruce Kings of 24-22.  

The Bulldogs would fail to score on the short 4 on 3 power play to open the third, but they got the equalizer just seconds later while down two men as both Spruce Kings exited the box but couldn't get into the zone in time as Brett Stewart ripped one home top corner, short-side bar down past the glove of Brooks-Potts from the left face off dot. Evan Tironese and Josh Adkins picked up the assists :43 seconds into the third. What could have been a big turning point and momentum swing was snuffed out less than a minute later as the Spruce Kings took the lead right back on the power play after consecutive huge saves by Christopolous as Jeremiah Luedtke jammed a rebound home to make it 4-3 at the 1:37 mark with the assists going to Justin Rai and Chad Staley. They would control the play and push for the insurance marker and eventually got it when Brent Lashuk converted a cross-ice one-timer just squeezing it past the left toe of Christopolous to make it 5-3 with Taylor Allan drawing the only assist at 8:28 of the third. The Bulldogs would be again given a glorious chance to get back into it just over two minutes later as they went to a 5 on 3 power play as Zak Bowles was drilled from behind with the Dogs already on the power play. They would convert on the advantage on a net mouth scramble with Chris Schutz getting credit for his second of the game to make it 5-4 with Mitch Makin and Brett Stewart picking up the assists at the 10:07 mark of the third. The Bulldogs would have their opportunities the rest of the way to get the equalizer, but the Spruce Kings also did a very good job at the end of a long road trip to win battles and hem the Dogs in their end to kill the clock. The best chance might have been when Dylan Haugen walked into the high slot with just under 30 seconds to play where he drove a slap shot on net that Brooks-Potts made a great save on turning the puck up and out of play as the Kings killed the remaining 22 seconds to take the win.

Shots favoured the Dogs 43-36 with Billy Christopolous taking the loss while Alex Brooks-Potts picked up the win. The Dogs went 1 for 8 on the power play, while also scoring once shorthanded. The Spruce Kings went 2 for 7.

With the loss, the Dogs win streak is stopped at four. They are next in action Friday at home against the Cowichan Valley Capitals.

Hammer

Line ups Spruce Kings @ Bulldogs


Bulldogs host Spruce Kings this afternoon, Josh Mitchell interview


It's the end of a busy weekend this afternoon for the Bulldogs (6-4-0-0, 2nd Island) as they host the Prince George Spruce Kings (7-4-0-1, 2nd Mainland) who are at the end of a busy week as they have been on the road since a Wednesday night contest in Chilliwack. 

After back-to-back wins over the Capitals this weekend, the Dogs have won four in a row to enter play today in second place in the Island Division. The Spruce Kings fell 5-1 last night to the Clippers in Nanaimo to see their record on this road trip fall to 1 and 2. They fell 3-2 to the Chiefs in Chilliwack on Wednesday before picking up a 5-4 OT win over the Kings in Powell River on Friday night.

It's the second meeting of the season between the teams after the Spruce Kings won a wild and crazy affair on the second day of the season at the BCHL Showcase by a 6-5 score


Myself, Bruce MacDonald and Dan Tisserand will bring all the action to you on Van Isle Ford Bulldogs Hockey on 93.3 The Peak FM today with the pregame show kicking off at 1:45 with the play-by-play/colour+analysis/team+player stats to follow.


If you aren't in radio listening range of 93.3 The Peak FM you can listen/watch the game by:


Listening Live on your computer: www.933thepeak.com
Listening Live on your SmartPhone : www.tunein.com/mobile/
Watching Live on your computer/SmartPhone www.fasthockey.com

Today's 2nd Intermission marks the beginning of this year's series of what will be MANY Bulldog alumni interviews. It is just so much fun to catch up with all these guys, even if it's only for a short conversation. I get a lot of feedback from fans in regards to these interviews, as they bring back plenty of good memories from games in the past.


Getting the season going today is former Bulldog Josh Mitchell, now in his Junior year with the NCAA's RIT Tigers

Hammer

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Dogs win fourth straight, 8-1 over Caps, sweep home and home




Another fantastic start for the Bulldogs, as they took a 1-0 lead just over a minute into the game as Dylan Haugen took an outlet pass at centre and raced over the Capitals line down the right wing. Josh Adkins would catch up and find the puck off Haugen's stick, where he blasted a one-timer top corner, far-side past the blocker of Michasiw off the crossbar and in. Brett Stewart also picked up an assist on the play at the 1:14 mark of the first. The Dogs would go the power play just a minute later, and they connected to make it 2-0 as Scott Clark dished the puck from the right half boards back to the right point for Evan Tironese. He would move laterally and dish the puck back to the top of the point for Darian Henry who blew a one-time slap shot through the legs of Michasiw at the 3:41 mark, with the shots at the time 4-0 Bulldogs. The Capitals would get several opportunities immediately afterwards on a power play of their own, but Nathan Warren held the fort and came up with a great desperation rebound save to protect the lead. The Dogs built their lead late in the period when the line of Zak Bowles Zach Funk and Eric Margo was left on the ice for another chance after a great shift where they hemmed the Capitals in their zone for an extended period. The move paid off in mere seconds as Zach Funk won the draw to Zak Bowles on the left wing wall where he threw a quick cross-ice pass to the top of the point for Troy Dobbs, who threw an odd-speed wrister on goal that beat Michasiw low, far-side to make it 3-0 Dogs at the 17:37 of the first. Shots favoured the Dogs 11-7 after 20 minutes, although Dan Tisserand actually had them credited with 14.

The Capitals would come out inspired to start the second, while the Dogs looked a little bit like they were enjoying their lead. After consecutive good shifts the Caps were awarded a power play that they would connect on just seconds into the advantage when Kyle Horsman deflected a Skylar Pacheco point shot from the slot past Nathan Warren. Brayden Gelsinger also drew an assist on the play at 4:15 of the period. The Capitals would continue to push and were awarded two more power play opportunities. Instead of getting back into the game, the Bulldogs penalty kill came up big to protect the lead and take momentum right back. Chris Schutz would have a great chance on a breakaway, but Matthew Zentner - who entered the game in relief to start the second - came up with a big save to keep it 3-1. The Dogs would push and push and were finally rewarded at the end of a relentless shift in the attacking zone as Darian Henry threw a shot on net that was stopped by Zentner, but Josh Adkins fought off the defence to one-hand it home to make it 4-1. Mitch Makin also drew an assist on the play at 16:15 of the second. The Dogs would continue to push the pace and found the net again just under two minutes later when Evan Tironese kept the puck in twice before Garrett Halls then knocked it down at the left point and blew a slap shot past the blocker of Zentner to make it 5-1 from Tironese and Clark at 18:09. On the next shift the Dogs would draw a penalty, and less than a minute later drew another as Zak Bowles was high-sticked, resulting in the Dogs starting the third period on a two-man advantage for just over a minute in duration. The Dogs out shot the Caps 14-10 for a two period advantage of 26-17.

The Dogs made quick work of the 5 on 3 to start the third period, making it a 6-1 game when Chris Schutz retrieved the puck on the right wing and found Evan Tironese at the right point. In a play similar to the Dogs second goal of the night Tironese slid to the wall while Darian Henry slid to the middle where Tironese found him with a perfect pass that he absolutely demolished into the top corner past the glove of Zentner at :25 seconds of the third period. Just three minutes later it was a 7-1 lead as Eric Margo chopped a pass at centre ice to a speeding Zak Bowles who blew around the Capitals defence and in on the breakaway where he wristed one home at the 3:34 mark of the period. The game remained pretty much in control through the remainder of the period but things got testy late resulting in a 5 on 3 power play for the Bulldogs. The Bulldogs would put their fourth line out for the first half of the power play, not wanting to rub the Capitals nose in it. The back-half of the power play saw the Bulldogs put out their top line, but also 17 year old defenceman Josh Harvey. After Darian Henry narrowly missed the net on a hat trick bid Evan Tironese picked the puck up and dished it off to the top of the right circle for Josh Harvey who blasted a slap shot home through Zentner for his first career goal and the 8-1 final score from Tironese and Schutz at the 17:45 mark of the third period.

Final shots favoured the Dogs 39-25 with Nathan Warren picking up the win while Lane Michasiw took the loss. The Dogs went 3 for 7 on the power play while the Capitals went 1 for 6.

With the win the Dogs have now won four in a row for the first time this season, and for the second night in a row they scored a season high in goals with eight.

The Dogs return home to host the Prince George Spruce Kings tomorrow afternoon at the Dog Pound at 2pm.


Line ups Dogs at Caps


Bulldogs visit Capitals tonight at the BIG STICK to conclude home andhome







It's the first trip of the season to the "Big Stick" (not just big, but actually the biggest in the world) for the Bulldogs (5-4-0-0, 4th Island) as they visit the Capitals (2-10-0-0, 5th Island) at the Island Savings Centre in Duncan for the back half of this home and home set.

After last night saw a wild and crazy affair end in a 7-3 Dogs win, who knows what to expect tonight. That's why I always say to expect the unexpected as this game never fails to surprise me. It's hard to win on the road, period, and one would think it's even tougher when the opposition is a team you defeated the night before in your building, for the simple fact that the Capitals will want to answer back and defend their own ice. The Bulldogs did plenty of things right last night, but last night is just that, LAST night.

The Caps did plenty of things wrong - giving up a goal a minute in, failing to generate offense but instead losing momentum on their power play, etc. When things go wrong, they can sure go wrong. It rains and it pours, so to speak. The Caps will no doubt be frustrated, motivated for revenge and desperate to turn their season around so the Dogs had best be ready. 


Our Broadcast begins with the pregame show at 6:45 on Pacific Chevrolet Bulldogs Hockey on 93.3 The Peak FM with the game beginning at 7pm with the full complement of myself providing the play-by-play, Bruce MacDonald on colour and analysis and Dan Tisserand compiling team and player stats throughout the contest.


If you aren't in radio listening range of 93.3 The Peak FM you can listen/watch the game by:


Listening Live on your computer: www.933thepeak.com
Listening Live on your SmartPhone : www.tunein.com/mobile/
Watching Live on your computer/SmartPhone www.fasthockey.com

Tonight's 2nd Intermission guest is Adam Donnelly from the CKPG News team in Prince George, temporary play-by-play voice of the Prince George Spruce Kings who visit the Dog Pound tomorrow afternoon.

Hammer 

Friday, October 17, 2014

Dogs top Caps 7-3 for third straight win in a wild one at the Dog Pound





It was the best start to a game for the Dogs this season, results-wise at the very least, as they scored before the game was a minute old to go up 1-0 when Troy Dobbs pinched in to keep the puck in the zone on the right side. He would feed it below the goal line for Scott Clark who put a perfect pass into the deep slot for Evan Tironese who ripped one top corner over the glove of Matthew Zentner to make it 1-0 at the 39 second mark. The Dogs had a great chance to go up 2-0 on a 2 on 1 rush where Evan Tironese sent Scott Clark in alone but Zentner came up with a big breakaway stop with his right pad. The Dogs would build the lead to 2-0 on another odd-man rush as Brett Stewart put a pass up the right wing onto the tape of Chris Schutz on the red line. He would relay a quick backhand pass ahead to Evan Tironese who walked in all alone down the right wing where he ripped a shot low, far-side past the blocker of Zentner to make it 2-0 at 10:50 immediately after the media time out. The Dogs kept the pressure up, taking a 3-0 lead when Zak Bowles set up Eric Margo in the deep slot where he threw a puck at the net that was deflected downwards and through the five-hole of Zentner by Zach Funk at 15:48. The lead wasn't three for long though, as the Capitals pushed right back and got on the board as the Dogs broke down in their zone as Kyle Horsman drove the net through the right circle where he snapped one top corner, short-side over the glove of Christopolous to make it 3-1 at 17:11 from Luke Novak and Julien LePage for a 3-1 Dogs lead after one, with the Caps leading the shots 13-12.

The Bulldogs would end up in the penalty box early - and throughout the second on four different occasions, but their penalty kill was beyond inspiring as it at times carried the play in the Capitals zone and out shot the power play. Despite carrying the bulk of the play, the Dogs couldn't build their lead as Zentner held the fort in the Capitals net. A late period flurry saw the Dogs attack and hem the Caps in their zone for what felt like three minutes, with countless near misses in scrambles around the goal. The Dogs would out shoot the Caps 24-16 for a two period total of 36-29 Bulldogs. 

The Bulldogs would blow the game open with back-to-back power play goals less than a minute apart early in the third period as Josh Adkins was cut on a high stick by Mitchell Stapley. It was 4-1 at 4:27 of the period when Darian Henry put a shot on net that was stopped by Zentner. He was unable to control the rebound though, and didn't get any help as Scott Clark scored while falling from behind the goal line. In the back-half of the double minor less than a minute later as Everett Putz went to the net after winning a draw in the zone and potted a rebound at the side of the net for his first career goal, with assists going to Josh Smith and Drew Blackmun at 5:06 of the third. On the next shift Brodie Smith would drop the gloves with Putz, and when the dust settled it was ruled that Smith was the instigator. The Capitals would quiet the crowd in short order, as they trimmed the gap to 5-2 as Jesse Neher walked into the Dogs zone during four-aside hockey and backed the defence in on Christopolous before ripping one top corner, far-side. Skylar Pacheco picked up the only assist at 6:03 of the third. The building would get loud again immediately afterwards as Eric Margo made a big hit on Sean Harrison at the Dogs blue line and raced away on a 3 on 1 rush where he drove the net and one-timed home a perfect centering pass from Zak Bowles to make it 6-2. The Capitals would pull back within three on an odd play that saw a puck contacted by a high stick but no signal made by the officials. A moment later, and it was in the back of the Dogs net with Luke Novak getting credit for the marker with Alex Bechtold getting credit for the lone assist at 12:49 to make it 6-3. The only goal the rest of the way was a bit bizarre, as the Dogs worked the puck around on a 5 on 3 with Darian Henry blowing a one-timer past Zentner from the left cirle on a beautiful cross-ice pass by Evan Tironese. The Referee would initially signal goal then emphatically wave it off and say no goal. After a conference between the officials the goal would stand. My best guess is that a goal was intially allowed before incidental contact made it waved off, which was then in turn also overturned when it was instead off setting minor penalties. Scott Clark would pick up an assist, and a penalty - at the 17:07 mark for the 7-3 lead and the eventual final score.

Shots favoured the Dogs 59-37 with Billy Christopolous picking up the win in net while Matthew Zentner took the loss. The Dogs went unofficially 3 for 9 on the power play while the Capitals went 0 for 6.

Lots of season highs in this one - most goals for, fastest goal to start a game, most power play goals for, most shots on net and largest margin of victory. In the end it was certainly a lot of fun to watch and no doubt a bunch of fun to play in if you are on the Dogs side of the puck. In the end, it means absolutely nothing come puck drop tomorrow and you can bet that the Caps will not have a spirited ride home and they will come out ready for payback when the teams meet tomorrow night at the Big Stick. 

Line ups Dogs vs Caps




Dogs host Caps tonight to kick off home and home, three game weekend


It's a big home and home set as the "Battle of the Valleys" heats up with the Bulldogs (4-4-0-0, 4th Island) and Cowichan Valley Capitals (2-9-0-0, 5th Island) meeting for two straight games starting tonight at the Dog Pound.

It's pretty simple - these are two HUGE four point games. A Bulldog sweep, and the Capitals are firmly planted in the basement - for the time being at least. A Capitals sweep, and the teams are instead tied in the standings, although the Dogs have three games in hand.

The most dangerous thing about the Capitals is that it would be easy for the Dogs to take them lightly if they look at their record. However, at this level of hockey if you take an opponent lightly and if you aren't prepared to play - you have lost already.

Consider that the last five Capitals losses have come by a combined six goals (four one-goal losses, and the other with a late empty netter to make it a two-goal spread) and a pretty good case could be made that the Capitals are a much better team than their record would indicate.

Any of the Bulldogs that were a part of last year's disastrous start (1-7-2-0 through 10 games) know full well how hard it is to go through what the Caps have to start the year off, and how hard they fought to dig out of it. Here's hoping they can relay that experience to their teammates so everyone is ready to face a hungry, desperate team. 


The regular broadcast team will be back together this weekend with Bruce MacDonald providing the colour and analysis, Dan Tisserand compiling team and player stats while I will call the play-by-play. Everything gets going with the pregame show at 6:45 with the play-by-play to follow at 7:00pm on Van Isle Ford Bulldogs Hockey on 93.3 The Peak FM




If you aren't in radio listening range of 93.3 The Peak FM you can listen/watch the game by:


Listening Live on your computer: www.933thepeak.com
Listening Live on your SmartPhone : www.tunein.com/mobile/
Watching Live on your computer/SmartPhone www.fasthockey.com


Tonight's 2nd Intermission guest is Jeff Sargeant, play-by-play voice of the Capitals - check out his great blog HERE


Hammer

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Dogs win second straight, 5-3 over Smoke Eaters, Atom/Peewee Dogs tourney continues





A fast start to this contest for the Dogs as they were inspired and carried the play in the early minutes running up an early 5-1 advantage in shots. They would take a 1-0 lead off a face off in their end that was actually won back to the line by the Smoke Eaters. A point shot was blocked by Chris Shutz, who put a perfect pass onto the tape of Scott Clark who flew the zone and snuck behind the Smokies defence. Clark would beat Adam Todd with a beautiful shot and a quick release, top corner glove side on Todd to make it 1-0 at the 6:47 mark of the first. The Dogs had a glorious chance off the ensuing draw to go up 2-0 on a partial break for Zak Bowles, but he just missed the net. The Smoke Eaters would get on the board to tie it at 1-1 on another faceoff in the Dogs end, this time retrieved out of the right corner and thrown to the top of the crease to a wide open Scott Davidson. Billy Christopolous would make the first save, but Davidson found his own rebound and poked it home before any help arrived. Assists on the play went to Charlie Zuccarini and Bryan Basilico at 9:20 of the first. The goal appeared to inspire the Smokies, as they pushed hard and had several good chances before finding the net to take a 2-1 lead as Jeremy Lucchini put a perfect pass to the side of the net to a wide open Bryan Basilico for a 2 on 1 down low. Darian Henry would make a great play to go down to one knee to block Basilico's attempted cross-crease pass, but the puck would end up right back onto the tape of Basilico who fired it into the open side. The only assist on the play went to Scott Davidson at 13:05 of the first. The Dogs would draw a penalty a minute later, but the first minute and change of the power play sputtered and struggled to gain the Smoke Eaters zone. They would stick with it and simplify it, and were rewarded with the game tying goal before the power play was out with a lucky bounce of their own as Zach Funk dug the puck loose and put it back to the left point to Garrett Halls. He would go cross-ice onto the tape of Troy Dobbs, who put a wrist shot at the net that was deflected by Josh Adkins off a Smoke Eater and in for a 2-2 tie at 16:17 of the first. Shots favoured the Smoke Eaters 14-12 through 20 minutes. 

The Bulldogs came out with a considerable jump in their step to start the second, as they were winning all the races to the pucks and all the battles, hemming the Smoke Eaters in their zone for extended periods. There would be no scoring through the first half of the period, but the Bulldogs persisted and were rewarded for it as Darian Henry skated the puck out from behind the Dogs net and carried it through centre ice before dishing off to Everett Putz over the Smokies line. Henry would drive the slot and take a return pass from Putz that he fired past the blocker of Todd to make it 3-2 Dogs at 13:57 of the second. The Smoke Eaters would be awarded a power play after an after-the-whistle skirmish, but a solid Dogs penalty kill protected the lead. They would find the net once more before the period was out when Evan Tironese made a nifty pass to send Mitch Makin to the net, where he cut to his backhand only to have Adam Todd make a great save with his left toe to keep it out. He couldn't control the rebound though, as Chris Schutz drove the net and tapped it over the line to make it 4-2 Dogs at 19:08 of the second. The Dogs led the shots 25-20 after two periods, out shooting the Smokies 13-6 through the frame.

The third period in the early minutes resembled the second, as the Dogs carried the bulk of the play and didn't give up much in the way of chances as they carried the two goal lead past the midway mark of the period. They continued to control the play, but much like the night before all it took was one let down and the Smokies made them pay and all of a sudden made it a one-goal game with 4:49 to play as Christopolous made two saves but couldn't get any help as Charlie Zuccarini poked the rebound home at the side of the net to make it 4-3 with 4:49 to play with assists going to Viktor Dombrovskiy and and Griffyn Martin. The Smokies would go to a power play just seconds after the ensuing puck drop at centre, but the Dogs did a fantastic job against the leagues #1 power play unit, not giving up much in the way of chances and getting the puck out when the opportunity presented itself. Right after the kill, it was game over as Eric Margo made a great read to pick the puck off in the Smokies zone and throw a shot on net that was stopped by Todd, but the rebound went right onto the tape of Evan Tironese who tapped it over the line for a 5-3 lead with 2:27 to play for the final score.

Shots favoured the Dogs 38-30, with Billy Christopolous picking up the win and second star honours for the second night in a row while Adam Todd took the loss. The Dogs went 1 for 4 on the power play while the Smoke Eaters went 0 for 5.

The Dogs are next in action Friday at home when they kick off a home and home set with the Capitals and a three in three weekend as the Spruce Kings visit the Dog Pound next Sunday.

Have a great Thanksgiving weekend, and don't forget the Atom and Peewee Bulldogs continue to host their tournaments tomorrow and Monday at the Multiplex with the Atoms playing at 12:45 and the Peewees playing at 9:15. I'm thankful for family, friends, fans, great hockey and a couple of wins...and my first day off since September!

Hammer

Line up Dogs host Smokies


Friday, October 10, 2014

Bulldogs host Smoke Eaters tonight at the Pound, Tryg Strand interview

It's the first time this season that fans can come to the rink on back-to-back nights to follow their team as the Bulldogs (3-4-0-0, 3rd Island) host the Trail Smoke Eaters (4-2-0-0, 5th Interior) tonight at the Dog Pound. It's the second game of a three game home stand that concludes next Friday when the Dogs host Cowichan to kick off a home and home set with the Capitals.

The Bulldogs topped the defending Fred Page Cup Champion 3-2 last night at the Dog Pound, while the Smoke Eaters won their second in a row and did the Dogs a favour in the process by beating the Kings 5-2 last night in Powell River. It's actually the second game in a row that the Smokies have helped the Dogs as last Friday they beat the Capitals 6-2 in Trail.

This game is unique for the fact that the Smoke Eaters have five - yes FIVE former Bulldogs on their roster as a result of a series of moves over the last couple of years. Former Dogs on the Smokies include goalie Adam Todd - who left the Bulldogs to join the WHL's Saskatoon Blades before finding his way to Trail and also Harlan Orr - who went to Alberta in the off-season as future considerations from last year's Mitch Owsley acquisition. Craig Martin is also back with the Smokies - he was part of the future considerations deal that brought Jake Kauppila to the Dog Pound last season. Also returning to their former home is former Bulldog Affiliate Player in 12-13 Stephen Ryan, and last but not least Kienan Scott, who was with the Bulldogs for five games to start the year last year out of training camp before he was released. I hope I have all that straight! One thing I am certain on is that all the above named players will be pretty excited for this one tonight so I'm hoping the Dogs are too.

I'll provide the play-by-play while Al McCulloch provides the colour and analyis on Van Isle Ford Bulldogs Hockey on 93.3 The Peak FM  with the pregame show hitting the airwaves at 6:45 and the puck hitting the ice just after 7:00pm. 

If you aren't in radio listening range of 93.3 The Peak FM you can listen/watch the game by:


Listening Live on your computer: www.933thepeak.com
Listening Live on your SmartPhone : www.tunein.com/mobile/
Watching Live on your computer/SmartPhone www.fasthockey.com



Tonight's 2nd Intermission guest is former Bulldog Captain Tryg Strand in an interview with host Jeff Patterson from the BCHL this Week show on TSN 1040am in Vancouver. You can catch the show this morning, and every Saturday morning at 9:30 on TSN1040.

Here's a gorgeous goal Tryg scored a couple years ago with some magic against the Smoke Eaters!



Don't forget about the Atom and Peewee Thanksgiving tournaments continuing today on both ice sheets. The Atom Bulldogs opened up their tournament last night with a 9-1 win over Nanaimo and play at 1:15 today and 12:45 tomorrow with the gold medal game on Monday at 1pm. The Peewees meanwhile have two games today at 11:30 and 5:30 and one on Sunday morning at 9:15. The gold medal game for the Peewees goes 3pm on Monday.

Hammer

Dogs top Express 3-2



There was great end-to-end play to start the game, with no whistles over the first two minutes. The Bulldogs would take a penalty shortly afterwards, and while the Express didn't score they certainly looked like they are deserving of their #2 ranking on the power play as they worked the puck around nicely and generated a series of good looks but Billy Christopolous was sharp early. The Bulldogs would get a chance on the man-advantage just short of the midway mark of the frame and they would connect on it in the dying seconds of the advantage when a Evan Tironese shot was blocked and ended up back on the tape of Brett Stewart at the top of the point. He would throw one on net through traffic that deflected off Josh Adkins at the top of the crease and past Braden Krogfoss to make it 1-0 at the 10:43 mark. That would be the only scoring of the first, with the Express leading the shots 15-11.

The Bulldogs began the second period with a purpose, as they drew an early penalty after forcing the Express into a series of icings. They wouldn't find the net on the advantage, but they did a good job of getting pucks in on Krogfoss and appeared to gain some momentum. The Express would take another penalty immediately after the first one expired due to getting caught on a line change, but on this opportunity the Dogs sputtered and didn't manage much of an attack. The score stayed 1-0 until just short of the midway mark of the period when the Dogs went up 2-0 at the end of a good shift in the attacking zone as Chris Schutz found a loose puck in the left corner and walked up the wall and into the circle before spinning and firing and simply putting a puck on net that surprised Krogfoss and beat him high short-side. Evan Tironese picked up the only assist at 9:56 of the second. The Express would push right back and had a great opportunity to get on the board on a Nic Rasovic breakaway on the next shift, but Christopolous came up with a big save to keep it out. They would continue to push the pace thought, and got on the board three minutes after the Dogs had doubled their lead at the end of a shift in the attacking zone as Cameron Bertsch passed back to the point for Daniel Fritz who put a shot on goal what was deflected home by Brendan Lamont to make it 2-1 at 12:50 of the second. The Express would have a handful of chances to build the lead as the period wore on, but Christopolous was solid on several goal mouth scrambles to protect the lead and keep it 2-1 Dogs after two, with the Dogs out-shooting the Express 17-10 for a two period advantage of 28-25. 

The third period saw the Bulldogs immediately build on their lead on a great solo effort by Dylan Haugen as he picked off a pass at centre ice and walked over the Express line up the left wing on an odd-man rush where he kept the puck and fired it past the glove of Krogfoss to make it 3-1, un-assisted 1:43 into the third to give the Dogs a two goal cushion. The Dogs did a great job to control the game and not give up much in the way of chances around the net or on the rush as they salted the time away, but the Express didn't go quietly. Down a goal with less than five minutes to play they kept pushing and made it a one-goal game with just over a minute to play as Christopolous made a desperation save on the door step but couldn't recover or get any help as Brett Supinski retreived the rebound and scored on a banker from behind the net to make it 3-2 with 1:24 to play, with Daniel Fritz also picking up an assist on the play. The Express would get the goalie out for the extra attacker in the final minute but the Dogs held the fort to make the lead stand.

Shots favoured the Express 41-35 with Billy Christopolous picking up the win and first star honours while Braden Krogfoss took the loss. The Dogs went 1 for 4 on the power play while the Express went 0 for 3.

The Dogs host the Trail Smoke Eaters to conclude their weekend tomorrow.

Hammer

Line up Express @ Dogs