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Saturday, January 05, 2019

Bulldogs drop 3-2 heartbreaker in overtime to Wild

The Wild had a slight edge in the play in the early minutes, and put a handful of pucks on net early that tested John Hawthorne but he was solid to keep it scoreless. The Wild kept pushing the pace, and the Bulldogs kept chasing, and it was 1-0 soon afterwards on a net drive on the rush that saw Murphy Stratton deflect a cross-crease pass from Christophe Tellier just through Hawthorne. Christophe Fillion also drew an assist at 6:38 of the first. The Bulldogs responded well, with back to back shifts in the attacking zone to get into the game and shift momentum. The Wild had a great opportunity to pad their lead, but John Hawthorne got his left toe out to stop Murphy Stratton on a breakaway to keep it a one-goal game. The Bulldogs would get the equalizer in the dying seconds of the period, as Ryan Miotto worked hard to get on the forecheck to throw a hit in the near corner and knock the puck loose. Keaton Mastrodonato supported the pile and found the loose puck below the goal line, before putting a perfect pass to the deep slot for Grayson Valente, who walked in and made no mistake burying a wrister high past the glove of Cal Sandquist to make it 1-1 with 12.9 seconds to play in the first. Shots in the period were 14-3 Wild.

The second period was much more evenly played through the first ten minutes, with both sides having their chances but Hawthorne and Sandquist keeping it 1-1. The score stayed that way into the back half of the period, with the Wild having a good push for a couple of minutes, but being unable to take the lead, with a good chance on a breakaway by AJ Hodges just sailing high with Hawthorne possibly getting a piece of it with his shoulder. The Bulldogs would start a push in the following minutes, and would parlay it into their first lead of the game as they again got on the forecheck deep in the Wild zone and won a battle that saw Jackson Doucet work it free for Keaton Mastrodonato on the left side, where he got a pass through a defender to the left point for Aaron Bohlinger. He would make it 2-1 by blowing a slap shot long side past the glove of a screened Sandquist at 17:28 of the second. Shots in the period were 10-9 Wild, for a 24-12 advantage after 40 minutes.

The Bulldogs had three or four great chances to pad their lead in the first two minutes of the third, but two great shot blocks in the paint by Drake Usher, followed by a diving save on an end-board bounce by Sandquist kept it 2-1. A minute later the Wild tied it, as a deflected pass by Brian Adams was found off the back post by Matt Gosiewski, who just managed to sneak it through Hawthorne to make it 2-2 with Trevor Griebel also assisting at 2:05 of the third. The score held through the remainder of the period, with Hawthorne and the Bulldogs penalty killers came up on two instances to keep it tied, with Cal Sandquist came up with a few great saves of his own, including in the final minute when the Wild were penalized for too-many-men. The Bulldogs would threaten on it, but couldn't capitalize on it. Third period shots were 18-6 Wenatchee, for a 42-18 advantage after 60 minutes.

The Bulldogs had 36 seconds of power play time to open overtime and generated one good chance, but Sandquist came up with a save on a cross-ice one-timer. The Wild would win it 2:32 into overtime when Blake Bargar was stopped by Hawthorne, but he found his own rebound and lifted it home into the open side for the game winner, with Brandon Koch drawing the lone assist for the 3-2 final.

Shots in overtime were 5-2 Wild, for a game total of 47-20 Wild, with Cal Sandquist earning the win while John Hawthorne took the loss but earned 1st star honours. Both teams went 0 for 2 on the power play.

The Bulldogs next see action tomorrow afternoon when they host the Langley Rivermen.



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