Hamilton Bulldogs drop pre-season opener

The Hamilton Bulldogs opened the preseason with a 6-5 loss to the Toronto Marlies at the Oshawa Civic Auditorium.

Toronto opened the scoring at 9:18 of the first period when Brett Engelhardt recorded his first goal of the preseason. But with two goals in a span of 1:27 in the first period, the Bulldogs took a 2-1 lead. Daniel Pegoraro evened the score at the 16:33 mark on the power play. Then at 18:00, Matt D’Agostini notched his first exhibition goal to give Hamilton the lead.

Seven goals were scored in the second period, three by Hamilton. Frederic St. Denis, Duncan Milroy and Michael Lambert scored for the Bulldogs, while Martin Sagat, Jiri Tlusty, John Mitchell and Dominic D’Amour had the Marlies goals. The score at the end of the second period was 5-5.

Jeff Corey scored the Marlies game-winning goal at 10:51 of the third period.

Bulldogs starting goaltender Jaroslav Halak stopped 17 of the 22 shots he faced in two periods of action. Dov Grumet-Morris replaced Halak in net at the start of the third period and turned aside 10 of 11 shots. Marlies netminder Jean-Francois Racine made 20 saves on 25 shots.

Hamilton’s second pre-season game will take place on Friday (Sept. 29) at 7:30 p.m., when they visit the Onondaga County War Memorial at Oncenter in Syracuse, where they will combat the Crunch. Hamilton’s third pre-season contest is set for the next day at 4 p.m., when they will meet the Toronto Marlies at Woodstock’s Southwood Arena. The team’s final pre-season match-up is scheduled for Sunday (Oct. 1) at 4 p.m., when they will battle the Crunch again, at Niagara Falls (Ont.) Memorial Arena.

The Bulldogs open the 2006-2007 season on Friday, Oct. 6 when their North Division rival, the Manitoba Moose visit Copps Coliseum.