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Saturday, September 21, 2013

Dogs fall 7-5 to Eagles in a wild and crazy one

Not a bad start to the game early with good back and forth play, but it turned badly quickly as the Eagles went to the power play just over four minutes into the game. The Dogs appealed to the referee that the draw should have been outside the zone as play was stopped due to the Eagles playing the puck with a high stick. The appeal would fall on deaf ears, and the draw stayed in the zone. It seems what can go against the Dogs IS at this point, as right off the draw the puck ended up at the line where Philippe Johansson let a wrister go through traffic that beat Brad Rebagliati high glove-side. Jonah Renouf picked up the only assist at 4:19. The Dogs would come THAT close to scoring on the ensuing shift, but Victor Adamo made a big save on Mak Barden. Just seconds later, the Dogs ended up back in the penalty box, and it ended up in the back of their net again as Brett Mulcahy scored on his second spin-o-rama attempt in a matter of seconds, sneaking one home five hole from the crease, with assists to Nicolas Pierog and Zane Schartz at 6:47 of the first. Another penalty, another goal against at the 10:24 mark as Matthew Dawson scored on a one-timer from the top of the point from Brett Mulcahy and Zane Schartz as Dawson put the one-timer high, glove side on Rebagliati as Blake Pearson entered the game off the bench.

Despite the disheartening start to the game and the 3-0 hole, the Dogs didn't deflate. It would have been really easy for the Dogs to fold the tents and pack it in, but they just keep battling and playing hard. I maintained that if the Dogs kept it up, they would be rewarded.

Cue the second period.

The Dogs looked like a team UP 3-0, not down, as they came out flying from the opening puck drop. Hunter Stewart would chip the puck out of the zone where it was found at centre ice by Dylan Haugen. He would throw a quick shot on net that resulted in a rebound. Zach Funk would drive the net and get rewarded for it as he fired it into the open side to make it 3-1 at 3:09 of the second. Good hard work would draw a penalty shortly afterwards, and the Dogs would connect on it to really get the building into it as Tryg Strand scored on the second rebound after Hunter Stewart put a hard shot on goal from the slot, and Mak Barden had his first rebound stopped by Adamo to make it 3-2 at 5:19 of the second. Another power play, and it was quickly tied as Jared Wilson put a shot on net that was tipped home by Mak Barden, as the building was without question as loud as it has been since last year's Playoff run with the game tied at 3-3. Kurt Gosselin also picked up an assist on the play at 6:44 of the second. The Eagles would call time out to slow the momentum, and it appeared to work as they scored to stop the run of three un-answered goals as Matthew Dawson scored his second of the game driving the net to deflect a Jonah Renouf pass home past the blocker of Pearson. Danton Heinen also picked up an assist at 8:54 of the second.  The Dogs would battle back to tie it on the power play when Jared Wilson took a pass from I believe Dylan Haugen, and threw a shot on net that went wide, but hit either Adamo or an Eagle defender before finding the back of the net to make it 4-4 at 16:16. No assists were given on the play, but there should have been. The Bulldogs no doubt went to the room feeling sky-high, and pretty good about their chances.
Cue the third period.

A late second period penalty to Darian Henry - while not carrying the puck it looked like he took a stick in the midsection, and appeared to react by blinding swinging his stick with one hand - ended up being big. Just 12 seconds into the third period a clearing attempt hit a Bulldog in the face, and ended up on the tape of Danton Heinen who walked in on a 2 on 1 rush where he put a perfect cross-ice onto the tape of Michael Roberts who fired it into the open side before Pearson could get over to make it 5-4. It was 6-4 a minute and change later on a really weird goal as the Eagles threw the puck at the net off the half-boards that hit bodies in front of the net and went in. Nicholas Pierog would get credit for it, with assists to Braeden Russell and Ryan Fraser-Lee 1:26 into the third. Just 25 seconds later the Eagles had a 7-4 lead, just 1:51 into the period, as Mitchell Fyffe went from his own end, to the Dogs end, relatively untouched before walking to the slot where he fired one past Pearson. The Dogs would have to battle hard to get momentum back, and by the time they did it might have been too late, as Tryg Strand went to the net and roofed a centering pass from Mitch Makin to make it 7-5 with 4:43 to play in the third. That's as close as the Dogs would get though, as the Eagles made the lead stand.

Great effort, with not enough consistency and a continued run of bad bounces at times - not easy to win when you are losing, and tonight was proof of that.

Shots favoured the Dogs 42-35, with Brad Rebagliati giving up the first three goals before giving way to Blake Pearson. I had the Dogs at 3 for 4 on the power play, while the Eagles went 4 for 7.

Next up, a trip over to Powell River tomorrow to face the Kings.


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