Wednesday, February 12, 2014
Dogs top Kings 4-0
For the second straight home game against the Kings, the Bulldogs got off to a great start, going up 1-0 before the game was two minutes old as Mitch Makin chased down a loose puck and drove in on the Kings net where he beat Smith high, short-side. Scott Clark picked up the only assist at 1:55 of the first. On the next shift the Dogs would go to the power play as Dylan Haugen was hooked while driving the net. The Dogs would connect on the advantage when Darian Henry made a nice play to set up Mitch Owsley on the left wing wall. Owsley would return the pass as Henry drove the slot and Henry ripped it high past the glove of Smith at 3:29. The score stayed that way until the back half of the period when the Dogs made it 3-0 as Justin Georgeson and Tryg Strand both drove the net hard to set up a good chance. Smith would make the first save but he couldn't locate the rebound as Hunter Stewart drove the net and roofed it under the bar at 13:47. The remainder of the period saw a plethora of penalties. First it was a two and a ten to Ryan Scarfo for a hit-from-behind on Ryan Buse that was called as a check to the head. On the delayed penalty, Craig Martin was hauled down on a breakaway, drawing another minor. The Bulldogs weren't able to connect on the long 5 on 3, as they took a penalty just over a minute into it. Shortly afterwards, Darian Henry took a knee-on-knee hit from Luke Ripley that left him writhing in pain on the ice. Gosselin would challenge Ripley, who seemed to drop the mitts and accept the challenge. Gosselin would pick up a penalty for instigating, along with five for fighting, while Ripley got five for kneeing and five for fighting, bringing about the very rare Regulation time 3 on 3 hockey. The period ended with the Dogs back on the power play with the major time remaining, with the shots 13-10.
The second period saw the Bulldogs continue to play solid hockey as they carried the bulk of the play. They would build their lead to 4-0 when Garrett Halls made a great play to carry the puck down the left wing from neutral ice and into the left corner of the Kings zone where he put a perfect centering pass onto the tape of Zach Funk, who one-timed it past the blocker of Jonah Imoo - who had entered the game in relief of Smith after the third Bulldogs goal. Dylan Haugen also picked up an assist on the play at 5:43 of the second. The Kings wouldn't quit, and pushed hard to get into the game. They would draw two penalties over the back half of the period, but the penalty killers and Connor LaCouvee held the fort to keep it 4-0 Dogs after 40 minutes with shots favouring the Kings 22-19.
The Bulldogs continued to play pretty solid hockey through the early parts of the third period, with the Kings continuing to push to try and get back in it. They would have a glorious chance to get on the board when Stephen Hiff was awarded a penalty shot seven minutes into the period. He would try to go low stick-side on LaCouvee, who stuck with him as the shot hit the post and stayed out to keep it 4-0. There would be no scoring the rest of the way.
Final shots favored the Bulldogs 32-27 with Connor LaCouvee picking up 1st star honours with the win in net while Jeff Smith took the loss before being replaced by Jonah Imoo. Unofficial special team stats had the Dogs 1 for 4 on the power play while the Kings went 0 for 3.
With the win the Dogs remain a point back of the Capitals for 4th on the Island, as they beat the Clippers 3-1 in Nanaimo.
The Dogs next see action Saturday night - note the start time - as they take on the Kings in Powell River, a 6:30 start.