Bulldogs pick up second straight win

TORONTO – Three unanswered goals – one in the second period and a pair in the final frame – gave the visiting Hamilton Bulldogs a 4-1 decision over the Toronto Marlies in an afternoon matchup at Ricoh Coliseum on Saturday (Jan. 7).

Andreas Engqvist, Brian Willsie, Aaron Palushaj, and Zack Fitzgerald provided the offence for Hamilton while netminder Robert Mayer turned aside 19 of the 20 shots he faced for the American Hockey League victory. Palushaj, Engqvist, Willsie and Fitzgerald each had two point nights.

The win lifted Hamilton into third place in the AHL’s North Division, although that could change once weekend play has finished.

Hamilton struck first when Engqvist scored at 10:43 of the first period, beating goaltender Ben Scrivens’ with a five-hole shot. Engqivst scored his team-leading tenth goal of the season following a series of passes from Palushaj and Louis Leblanc.

But the Marlies would retaliate just 32 seconds later when Ryan Hamilton beat Mayer to tie the game.

At 10:44 of the second period, Scrivens wandered from his net to play the puck but Philippe Lefebvre reached it first and relayed a pass Willsie, who took advantage of the open net to score his fifth of the season, making it 2-1 Bulldogs.

Palushaj gave the ‘Dogs a 3-1 lead midway through the third period, earning his eighth point in six games and his sixth point in three games.

FitzGerald sniped the puck past Scrivens with less than three minutes left in the game to cement the ‘Dogs victory.

Hamilton also edged the Marlies in shots, 30-20. A crowd of 6,596 watched the game.

The Bulldogs return to Copps Coliseum on Sunday (Jan. 8) to take on the Oklahoma City Barons at 3 p.m., looking for their third win in as many nights.