The Hamilton Bulldogs have until Friday (Jan.22) to figure out how not to stretch a season-long losing streak to five games. After losses on Friday, 6-5 to the Rochester Americans, and Saturday, 3-1 to the Grand Rapids Griffins, the ’Dogs are idle until Friday when they’ll return to Rochester to face the Americans.
On Saturday in Grand Rapids the Griffins handed their guests their fourth straight defeat, starting the game’s scoring at 17:23 of the first frame when Tomas Tatar beat goalie Curtis Sanford.
The Griffins took a 2-0 lead at 3:25 of the second stanza. While shorthanded, Francis Pare skated in alone on Sanford and slid the puck past Sanford.
The Bulldogs got on the scoreboard at 7:48 of the final frame. David Desharnais scooped up the puck behind the net before feeding a pass to Ryan White, who was positioned in front of the goal. White snapped a shot that beat Grand Rapids goaltender Daniel Larsson.
Cory Emmerton added an empty net marker with seven seconds left in the game.
Hamilton outshot Grand Rapids, 40-25 in front of 6,859 spectators.
On Friday night, the Hamilton Bulldogs forced the Americans to a shootout but came up short to disappoint a crowd of 7,120 at Copps Coliseum.
Following a scoreless first period, the Bulldogs opened the game’s scoring at 3:37 of the second stanza. David Desharnais skated behind the Rochester net before sending a pass to Brock Trotter who scored his first of two on the night. goaltender Alexander Salak.
The Amerks tied the game just over a minute later while on the power play when Jeff Taffe beat goalie Cedrick Desjardins.
The ‘Dogs regained the lead at 8:00 of the period. Yannick Weber received the puck from Mathieu Darche before blasting a shot from the point that was stopped by netminder Alexander Salak. The goaltender, however, could not contain the rebound, and Darche batted at the puck before it was kicked across the goal line by a Rochester defender. Darche received credit for the goal, with Weber and Tom Pyatt drawing assists.
Rochester tied the game at 18:12 of the period. Michael Duco carried the puck into the Bulldogs’ zone and rushed towards the Hamilton net. He fired a shot that was partially stopped by Desjardins but it trickled over the goal line. The Americans took the lead just 18 seconds later. Chris Taylor sent a cross-ice pass to defenseman Clay Wilson, who was pinching in from the point. Wilson wired a shot that beat Desjardins.
Just 65 seconds into the final period, Hamilton tied the game. Desharnais received the puck from Ryan White before sending a pass to Trotter, who was positioned just behind the net. Trotter chipped the puck to the front of the net, where it bounced off Salak and into the net.
Rochester regained its lead at 4:43 while on the power play. Jamie Johnson fed the puck back to Michal Repik, who was positioned at the point. Repik fired a slap shot along the ice that beat Desjardins. Shawn Matthias gave the Amerks a 5-3 lead at 5:37.
Maxwell made the game 5-4 at 8:25 of the final period while on the power play. Desharnais received the puck from Trotter while at the left side of the net. Desharnais faked a shot before dishing a cross-ice pass to Maxwell, who one-timed a shot past an out-of-position Salak.
The ‘Dogs once again clawed their way back into the game at 16:30 of the third by scoring a shorthanded marker to tie the game at five goals a side. Shawn Belle rushed the puck into the Rochester zone before sending a pass back to P.K. Subban who was positioned at the left point. Subban then fed a pass to Mike Glumac who snapped the puck past Salak.
The overtime period solved nothing, and the game went into a shootout. Trotter and Desharnais converted for Hamilton but Evgeny Dadonov, Steiner and Taffe scored for the Amerks to lead them to victory.
Hamilton was outshot 38-32.