The Hamilton Bulldogs erased a two-goal deficit and scored two unanswered goals in the third period to defeat the Grand Rapids Griffins 3-2 on Sunday afternoon at Van Andel Arena.
The win gives the ‘Dogs improves their record to 34-20-2-3, pulling them into a second place tie in the North Division Standings with the Rochester Americans, and only two points behind the first-place Manitoba Moose.
The Griffins opened the scoring at 8:56 of the first period when Matt Hussey posted his 14th goal of the season. Jeff Campbell and Tom Galvin earned assists on the power-play marker.
Thirty-one seconds into the middle frame, Jamie Tardif put Grand Rapids up 2-0 with his second goal of the campaign. Tardif took a pass from Tony Voce and buried a shot past Hamilton’s starting goaltender Dov Grumet-Morris.
Bulldogs defenceman Dan Jancevski cut the Griffins lead to 2-1 with his fourth marker of the season at 10:59 of the middle stanza. On the power play, Corey Locke fed a tape-to-tape pass to Jancevski who chipped in the ‘Dogs first goal at the Van Andel Arena in 164:36. Heading into the game, Grand Rapids had recorded two-straight home shutouts against Hamilton.
Cory Urquhart then evened the score 2-2 for the Bulldogs with his third tally of the season at 6:54 of the third period. Jancevski, the game’s first star, and Locke each picked up their second points on the night with helpers on the goal.
The Bulldogs then took a 3-2 lead that they wouldn’t relinquish. Matt D’Agostini notched his 13th goal of the campaign at the 15:00 mark of the final frame. Jean-Philippe Cote bounced a wrist shot towards the Griffins net and D’Agostini, who was parked in front of the crease, tipped in the game-winning goal past netminder Jimmy Howard.
Grumet-Morris was named the Pearson Dunn Player of the Game for the second consecutive contest, making 25 saves on 27 shots to earn his second win of the season and first victory as a Bulldog. At the other end of the ice, Howard turned aside 17 of the 20 shots he faced while suffering the loss for the Griffins.
The Bulldogs return to action on Wednesday, February 28th at Allstate Arena in Omaha when they battle the Ak-Sar-Ben Knights at 8:00 p.m.