Dogs get Maxim effort to win season opener

Maxim Lapierre had two goals, including the game-winning tally just 39 seconds into overtime, and an assist, to lead the Hamilton to a 3-2 win over the Americans in the Bulldogs’ 2007-08 season opener on Sunday night. The Bulldogs had to erase two one-goal deficits in the game (1-0 and 2-1) to earn the win.

Rochester opened the scoring at 13:41 of the first period when Clarke MacArthur notched his first goal of the season.
Matt D’Agostini evened the score for Hamilton almost two minutes later. D’Agostini’s goal, assisted by Corey Locke and Lapierre, was the 50th point of his American Hockey League career in just 64 games. The point also made D’Agostini the 50th player in franchise history to record 50-career points in a Bulldogs’ jersey.

The Americans restored their one-goal lead with only 16 seconds left in the first period with Mark Mancari’s first goal of the campaign.

At 11:52 of the middle stanza, Lapierre intercepted a pass from Amerks goaltender David Shantz and buried the puck into an empty net to tie the game 2-2. The unassisted goal was the lone scoring play of the second period.

After a scoreless third period, Lapierre notched his second goal and third point of the night just 39 seconds into overtime for the win. Sergei Kostitsyn, who earned his first-career professional point, and Ryan O’Byrne drew helpers on the game-winning goal.

A turnout of 6,985 watched Jaroslav Halak turn aside 27 of the 29 shots he faced for the Bulldogs while David Shantz made 18 saves on 21 shots for the Americans.

Both teams were 0-for-8 on the powerplay.

Last season’s Calder Cup champions play their home opener on Friday (Oct. 12) t 7:30 p.m. against the Americans at Copps Coliseum.