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Saturday, October 12, 2013

Dogs drop fourth straight, 5-1 to Grizzlies

The Bulldogs came out of the gate flat and fighting the puck, while the Grizzlies looked sharp and quickly capitalized on one of the many early Bulldog turnovers to make it 1-0 as Storm Wahlrab walked into the slot and beat Howat low, far side off the post and in. The goal was unassisted 2:29 into the game. The Dogs would fight to get back in it and get some momentum going, but got caught deep on several instances and had to rely on Howat to come up with two big saves on a 2 on 1 rush to keep it just 1-0. More controversy was involved in the Grizzlies taking a 2-0 lead as earlier in the shift Zak Bowles was clipped with a high stick that went undetected by the two Referees. As play continued, the Grizzlies found the net as Jesse Schwartz scored from the slot off the pad of Howat and in with Jay Mackie and Myles Fitzgerald assisting at 11:15. The Officiating crew would meet and have a conference following the goal, which led to one of the Referees going to the Bulldog bench to take a closer look at Bowles. In the end, the goal would count. Just 34 seconds later the Grizzlies went up 3-0 on a 2 on 1 rush with a defender caught deep as David Walchuk walked in alone where he went top corner, glove side on Howat, with assists to Shawn McBride and Mitch Meek at 11:49. The Dogs fought hard to get back into it and on the board on a nice outlet pass by Harlan Orr that led to Dylan Haugen and Zach Funk attacking the Grizzlies zone with speed. They worked a give-and-go to perfection as Funk skated in on a breakaway where he went backhand off the post and in past Dillon to make it 3-1 at 15:35. On the next shift the Dogs would give it right back though, as they again got caught at the Offensive Blue line and turned it over resulting in Chris Albertini skating in on the breakaway where he went five-hole on Howat to make it 4-1. The goal was unassisted at 16:32, as Brad Rebagliati entered the game in relief of Howat.

The Dogs came out with great energy despite the scoreboard to start the second, as they killed off a penalty to start the period and then went to work with several solid shifts in the Grizzlies zone. The Grizzlies however would score against the flow of the play, getting the puck into the Dogs end and back of the net where it was put out front to Gerry Fitzgerald from Myles Fitzgerald, with Gerry one-timing it home as the Bulldogs were focused on the puck behind the goal. Jesse Schwartz also drew an assist on the play at 5:36 of the second. Despite the deficit, the Dogs continued to push hard, but despite their efforts they couldn't find the net with a Tryg Strand chance somehow staying out and a Josh Adkins one-timer off an end-board bounce hitting the post and staying out with the Grizzlies leading 5-1 after 40 minutes.

There would be no scoring over the final 20 minutes, with the Bulldogs penalty kill and Brad Rebagliati getting plenty of work as the Grizzlies opened the period on a long 5 on 3 power play and had three more advantages throughout the period. The Dogs were unable to get much of an attack going as the game ended in a 5-1 final.

Shots favoured the Grizzlies 34-25, with Tyger Howat taking the loss giving up four goals in the first before being replaced by Brad Rebagliati. Alec Dillon picked up the win for the Grizzlies. The Dogs went 0 for 4 on the power play while the Grizzlies went 0 for 6.

The Dogs home stand continues Wednesday night when they host the Cowichan Valley Capitals.

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