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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.


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