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A great start for the Bulldogs, as they ran up an early 6-0 lead in shots with at least two or three good scoring chances in tight that Matthew Robson stood tall on to keep it scoreless. The Dogs continued to push, and Robson continued to be equal to the task. The Vees would then get a great in alone chance on the rush as Grant Cruikshank drove the net only to be turned away by Carson Schamerhorn. The energy and pace of play would flatten out in the back half of the period, with not much in the way of high quality scoring chances but a couple of pucks on net that both Schamerhorn and Robson were sharp on as it stayed 0-0 after 20 minutes, with the shots even at 11 aside.
The Bulldogs once again had a great start to the second, pushing the pace and putting a lot of pucks on net through the first three or four minutes of the period. The Dogs would open the scoring soon afterwards, as Carson Schamerhorn made a good right pad save on a Nicholas Jones shot from the right circle. The rebound was immediately snapped up ice by Jake Wilhelm. It had perfect weight on it, as Robson couldn't race out to get it, allowing Cayden Kraus to skate in alone where he snapped one home short-side to finally give the home town fans a chance to celebrate and hear the goal horn to make it 1-0. Assists on the play went to Wilhelm and Schamerhorn at 4:56 of the second. The Dogs would earn the first power play chance of the game in short order, and connected in the final 15 seconds of the advantage to make it 2-0 as they moved the puck around beautifully and won a series of battles to keep the puck alive in the attacking zone. Tristan Bukovec found Ryan Finnegan back of the net, and he put a sharp pass out to the deep slot and onto the stick of Jake Witkowski where he snapped a perfect corner short-side high under the bar and over the blocker of Robson to make it 2-0 at 11:34 of the second. Shots in the period favoured the Dogs 14-5 for a 40 minute total of 25-16.
The third period was again fantastic hockey to watch, with the action being high paced and end to end. The Dogs killed off a Penticton power play to protect their lead, before earning a power play of their own, but they couldn't connect on it. The Vees would finally connect on the power play in the late stages of the third to make it a 2-1 game after a fantastic early save by Carson Schamerhorn on Ty Amonte. The Vees would make a series of quick passes under pressure as Chris Clack and Owen Sillinger set up Nicholas Jones in the high slot where he blew a slapper home high, glove side on Schamerhorn at 16:19 of the third. The Vees would press, but the Dogs did a great job to steel their resolve and they didn't give up much the rest of the way to kill the clock for the 2-1 final.
Shots favoured the Vees in the third 10-6, and the Bulldogs 31-26 in the game with Carson Schamerhorn picking up first star honours with the win while Matthew Robson took the loss. Both teams went 1 for 2 on the power play.
The Dogs are next in action Friday in Chilliwack when they face the Chiefs at the BCHL Showcase.
The Bulldogs will be out and involved in the community on Sunday, as Assistant Equipment Manger Jamie Amos (back to back fundraising champ, if I'm not mistaken) and part of the roster will take part in the Terry Fox Run. Everything takes place at the Royal Canadian Legion, with registration at 9am and the run to follow at 10am with breakfast available for adults and kids.
The rest of the team will be taking part in the Alberni Clayoquot Regional District's Family Farm Day. Self guided tours go at six farms around the Valley starting at 11am. Get more details HERE