Jaroslav Halak posted a 22-save shutout as the Hamilton Bulldogs blanked the Griffins 1-0 on Monday night (Dec. 31) in Grand Rapids. With the win, the ‘Dogs record improves to 11-14-1-5 on the season.
Despite out-shooting the Griffins 13-5 in the first period and 13-6 in the middle stanza, the Bulldogs couldn’t muster a goal and the game remained scoreless heading into the third frame. At 6:35 of the final period, the Bulldogs broke the stalemate on the power play when Janne Lahti posted his fifth goal of the season. Daniel Corso broke into the Griffins zone and fed a backhand pass to Lahti who made no mistake to score the only goal of the game, giving Hamilton a 1-0 lead.
Jaroslav Halak stopped all 22 shots he faced for the Bulldogs and earned his 11th career shutout in just his 57th American Hockey League game. Jimmy Howard was named the game’s second star after turning aside all but one of the 32 shots he faced.
Hamilton was 1-for-3 on the power play and a perfect 3-for-3 on the penalty kill.
The defending Calder Cup champion Bulldogs return to action on Wednesday (Jan. 2) when they travel to the Rockford MetroCentre to take on the IceHogs at 8:05 p.m. Fans can listen to every Bulldogs game on 820 CHAM.
The ‘Dogs return home to Copps Coliseum on Friday (Jan. 4) for a tilt with the Griffins at 7:30 p.m.
In other Bulldogs activity, the Montreal Canadiens returned forward Corey Locke to the Hamilton. Locke was called up by the National Hockey League Habs on Dec. 30 and did not play in any games.
1. HAM – Janne Lahti-5 (Daniel Corso, Pavel Valentenko) – 6:35 (pp)
Grand Rapids: 5-6-11–22