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Friday, November 17, 2017

Dogs drop third straight 6-4 in crazy game in Trail

A tough start to the game from the get-go for the Bulldogs, as they were penalized for failing to exit the ice in time at the conclusion of warm up. They would come up with a solid kill and didn't give up much to keep it scoreless as Colten Lancaster turned aside the lone shot he faced. At the conclusion of the penalty they got a few opportunities on net themselves to test Brandon Wells in the Trail net. The Bulldogs would earn their first power play of the game later in the period, and threatened on it on several occasions early but failed to open the scoring. A 13 second five on three for the Bulldogs on a follow up penalty didn't generate much with the loss of the opening draw, but they continued to push and had a couple near misses, the most memorable coming when Tyler Vanuden sent Issac Tonkin-Palmer over the Trail line on a 2 on 1 rush down the left side where he kept the puck and fired a shot long-side that hit the post and crossbar and stayed out. The Bulldogs out shot the Smoke Eaters 11-8 in the first.

The second period saw the Bulldogs successfully kill off a carry over penalty from the first. They then dodged a bullet as Trevor Zins walked in alone off the right point and hit the crossbar. A fantastic save a few minutes later by Lancaster on Andre Ghantous in tight in alone with his right pad kept the game scoreless. The Bulldogs spent the better part of the next few minutes running around their zone defending, but didn't a good job to not concede a goal. They would then open the scoring on a pretty play that saw Mitch Oliver put a perfect outlet pass up the left wing for Christian Simeone. He would gain the Trail line and put a pass to the middle for Cole Poliziani. He would do a great job to knock the pass down off his feet and retain possession and spin and fire a perfect top corner wrister over the glove of Wells to make it 1-0 at 7:32 of the second. It was 2-0 Bulldogs three minutes later on a hard working shift in the attacking zone that saw Issac Tonkin-Palmer work the puck loose behind the net for Brad Ong. He made a sweet outlet onto the tape of Tyler Vanuden, who one-timed a high finish inside the far post for his first as a Bulldog at 10:21. It was 3-0 a minute and a half later as Ryan Steele played the puck behind the net for Cole Poliziani. He put a perfect feed into the slot for Christian Simeone, who made no mistake ripping a one-timer top corner inside the far post over the glove of Wells to make it 3-0 at 11:53. A big save by Tanner Marshall on Gregg Lee on the doorstep a minute later kept it a three-goal game, before a tough to watch sequence turned the game a further minute later, as Connor Welsh appeared to take a hard hit to the head in the Bulldogs zone in the near corner. An immediate penalty was called, but instead of the Bulldogs on the power play Welsh was penalized for retaliating. It was a 3-1 game seconds later when Kale Howarth walked in tight down the left side and picked the top corner, short-side high on Lancaster. Assists on the play went to Jeremy Lucchini and Braeden Tuck at 13:34 of the second. The Bulldogs were again penalized in short order as the Smokies continued to attack, with what earlier in the sequence looked like a Smokies goal being waved off. They would make it 3-2 a minute later anyway, on a partial breakaway with another delayed penalty on the way to the Bulldogs that saw a stretch pass carried up the right wing and in tight by Braeden Tuck, who went top corner, short-side high on Lancaster. Assists on the play went to Levi Glasman and Jeremy Lucchini at 15:39 of the second. The barrage continued on the power play seconds later, as a pass from the right point to below the goal line at the right side of the net was walked out front by Andre Ghantous, who snuck one in far side from a sharp angle to make it 3-3 at 16:16, with the lone assist going to Carter Jones. Shots in the period were 14-7 Trail, for a 22-18 advantage after 40 minutes.

The third period saw the Bulldogs get their feet back under them, and push to generate a couple of chances and a power play opportunity as a result. They would connect on it to take a 4-3 lead when Sami Pharaon came off the bench off a broken stick for Mitch Oliver to set up Connor Welsh at the right point. His one-timer would be stopped, but Jackson Doucet would slam the rebound home from the paint at 7:14 of the third. The lead would be very short-lived, with the Smoke Eaters tying it up less than a minute later as a Kale Howarth wrap around failed to go, but none of the Bulldogs back picked up the trailer in Levi Glasman who fired the loose puck inside the post to make it 4-4 at 7:56 of the third with Ross Armour also drawing an assist. The Dogs again pushed back, but couldn't take the lead before the Smoke Eaters found the net for their first lead of the game on a face off win in the Dogs end back to the point that saw a Jeremy Lucchini one-timer from the left point be deflected in past Lancaster by Spencer McLean. Blake Sidoni also drew an assist for winning the draw at 11:22 of the third. The Bulldogs earned a power play chance to try and find the equalizer shortly afterwards, and came painfully close on a puck that bounced around on the goal line but stayed out. The Bulldogs were then penalized with three minutes to play, but came up with a big kill to keep it a one-goal game. Any comeback attempt would be stopped on another lost faceoff in their end with just under a minute to play in the third as Tyler Ghiradosi one-timed a Carter Jones draw win top corner off the crossbar and in past Lancaster to make it 6-4 at 19:03 of the third for the eventual final.

Shots in the third were 12-10 Trail, for a game total in their favour of 34-28, with Colten Lancaster taking the loss while Tanner Marshall picked up the win in relief in net. The Dogs went 1 for 4 on the power play while Trail went 3 for 6.

With the loss, the Dogs have lost three in a row and are now winless in four games. They visit the Centennials tomorrow night in Merritt.



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