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Friday, March 07, 2014

Dogs top Grizzlies 4-0 to take 2-1 series lead

You could feel the tension in the air as Game 3 had a very tense start with a great crowd on hand and great atmosphere. The Grizzlies would take an early 5-0 lead in shots, but the Bulldogs fired right back to even it up, getting a great chance to take the lead as Alec Dillon stopped Tryg Strand on a breakaway. There would be no scoring throughout the first period, but there wasn't a lack of excitement as late in a frame a couple of heart-stopping moments had the building going as Alec Dillon twice misplayed dump ins, once fanning on the puck as it slid by the open net. Seconds later he would play one that was picked off by Zach Funk, who couldn't hit the empty net or get it out front to a teammate. The Bulldogs would have several scrambles as the period drew to the end, but couldn't find the net as it was 0-0 after one, with the Bulldogs leading in shots 12-10.

The Bulldogs came out and got on the board early in the second as Tryg Strand found Kurt Gosselin at the bottom of the right circle in the Grizzlies zone. Strand would go hard to the net as the give-and-go was worked to perfection with Gosselin finding him in the slot where he snapped it through the legs of Dillon at  2:50 of the second. It was 2-0 Dogs just 40 seconds later as the roof really started to rumble as Justin Georgeson found a loose puck in the slot that he roofed top corner, glove side on Dillon from Darian Henry and Tryg Strand at 3:20. The Dogs had a great chance to go up by three near the midway point of the period when Darian Henry sent Justin Georgeson in on the breakaway, but Dillon made a fantastic glove save. The Dogs would eventually take the 3-0 late in the period when Scottie Clark made desperation play to swipe the puck into the slot where Jake Kauppila found it and put a perfect cross-slot pass onto the tape of Harlan Orr who one-timed it home through Dillon at 17:12 of the second. The Dogs would take the lead into the third, leading in the shots 26-23.

The Bulldogs came out with a very strong third period, controlling the game and limiting the Grizzlies opportunities as they only got their second shot on net 9:10 into the period. Alec Dillon would come up with a handful of big saves to keep the Grizzlies in it. The Bulldogs would build their lead in the back half of the period on a well executed power play as Justin Georgeson that he relayed back of the goal line for Jake Kauppila, who put it on the tape of Hunter Stewart behind the goal line at the opposite side of the net. Stewart was un-checked, and he walked out front where he went short-side on the backhand over Dillon to make it 4-0 for the eventual Final.

Final shots favoured the Bulldogs 40-33, with Connor LaCouvee picking up 1st star honours with the win and the shut out while Alec Dillon took the loss. The Dogs went 1 for 4 on the power play while the Grizzlies went 0 for 4.

With the win the Bulldogs lead the series 2-1, Game 4 goes tomorrow night at the Dog Pound with a pregame Tailgate Party and BBQ getting going at 5:30.


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