Thursday, December 17, 2015
Grizzlies shut out Dogs 7-0
Tonight's Game Report is brought to you courtesy of the Best Western Plus Barclay Hotel
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A fairly tight start to the game from both sides of the puck as neither team carried the better of the play through the first four minutes. The building would wake up soon afterwards when Garrett Halls caught Jared Virtanten cutting across the Bulldogs line and levelled with a text book open ice hit. The Dogs had the better of the momentum and some opportunities on the power play, but the game remained scoreless through the first 10 minutes. Late in the period Josh Adkins would pick up a five minute major for a hit from behind on Joeseph Visconti. It's a tough call when looking at the video - which the Officials on the ice don't have - but it looks like Visconti takes a look to the middle of the ice, sees Adkins as he picks up the puck, and then turns to the boards to backhand the puck to centre. The hit was certainly from behind, but how much of the onus for that is on Adkins for finishing his check, and on Visconti for not protecting himself when he appeared to be aware of the opponent in his vicinity? Adkins would be challenged by Drayson Pears who wanted some retribution for the hit. Pears was indeed the aggressor, but perhaps no instigator penalty was handed out because Adkins obliged the invitation. The Bulldogs would kill off the penalty masterfully, only allowing a single shot as the period ended. The closest the Grizzlies came to finding the net was when Brett Stirling hit the post from the deep slot. Shots favoured the Bulldogs 8-4 after 20 minutes.
Any momentum that was gained at the end of the first, appeared to be lost as the second kicked off as the Grizzlies appeared to have a step on the Dogs. Two good saves by Brody Claeys would keep the Dogs in it, first on a 2 on 1 when he came over to rob PJ Conlon. The second came a minute later when he robbed Cole Pickup who was wide open in the hashmarks while the Dogs were on the power play. Just a minute and change later the Grizzlies found the net on and odd play as Dominic Thom appeared to win a battle behind his net but was then taken down by Brayden Gelsinger as the puck bounced out to the near side of the net where Keyvan Mokhtari one-timed it from a sharp angle and off Claeys and in. Assists on the play went to Brayden Gelsinger and Dante Hahn at 5:37 of the second. Before the Dogs knew what hit them it was 2-0 as Mitchell Barker found a loose puck up the right wing and got behind the Dogs defence and walked into the right faceoff dot where he snapped a shot far-side off the post and in past the blocker of Claeys, with Jared Virtanen picking up the only assist at 5:38. The Dogs would call time out to try and right the ship, but despite back to back power play chances they didn't threaten and didn't look in sync in failing to take advantage of the opportunities. The Grizzlies had a great chance to build their lead at the midway chance of the period, but Brody Claeys went post to post to rob Brett Stirling with a glove save on a 3 on 1 rush. The Dogs pushed and showed some urgency later in the period, but it would cost them as a missed point shot with everyone caught in deep rimmed up the boards and turned in a partial breakaway for Jared Virtanen up the right wing. He would chase it down and skate in tight on goal where he beat Claeys short-side under his glove to make it 3-0 at 14:32 of the period with Alex Peck drawing an assist. Shots in the period favoured the Grizzlies 15-12 for a two period advantage for the Bulldogs of 20-19.
The third period saw the Bulldogs fail to come out with a jump to get back in it before they got in penalty trouble. A very odd call saw an initial slash by Rhett Willcox go uncalled, before a retaliation slash by Brayden Gelsinger saw the Referees arm go up. However, the Grizzlies would get the power play as the initial penalty appeared to be retroactively called. The Dogs would kill off a 21 second 5 on 3 for the Grizzlies, but just a second later it was 4-0 as a point shot hit bodies in front and ended up onto the tape of Cole Pickup who slid it into the open side, with assists to Dante Hahn and Kevin Massy at 4:53 of the third. The Grizzlies went up 5-0 three minutes later on the rush as Brody Claeys made a fantastic first save and a mid-air rebound but didn't get enough help as Dante Hahn appeared to bunt it in out of midair. Jared Virtanen and Jake Stevens drew the helpers at 7:19 of the third. The scoring slowed somewhat until the latter stages of the game when the Grizzlies went up 6-0 on a seeing eye wrister from the top of the point by Mitchell Barker that got through a maze of bodies before hitting Claeys and squeaking over the line. Spencer Hunter drew the only assist at 15:32 of the third. It was 7-0 less than a minute later as Cole Pickup won a faceoff in the Dogs end and went to the net where no one picked him up. Cody Van Lierop would simply just get the puck to the net where Pickup deflected it through the legs of Claeys again to just squeak it over the line for the final score.
Shots favoured the Grizzlies 34-29 with Brody Claeys taking the loss while Matt Galajda picked up second star honours with the win and the shut out. The Dogs went 0 for 4 on the power play while the Grizzlies went 1 for 4.
The Dogs conclude their pre-Christmas portion of the schedule tomorrow night when they host the Cowichan Valley Capitals.