Bulldogs chase down Bears for win

Hershey, PA – The Hamilton Bulldogs twice overcame one-goal deficits to defeat the Hershey Bears, 3-2, in American Hockey League play at Giant Center on Saturday night (Dec. 8).

Hershey led 1-0 after the first period but Hamilton tied the score early in the second period. The Bears regained the lead less than two minutes after the Bulldogs equalizer. But two more Hamilton goals before the period ended gave the Bulldogs the win.

Joonas Nattinen scored the winner while Nathan Beaulieu had two assist.

The Bears opening goal came at 5:48 of the first period. Ryan Potulny scored his first of two on the night while the Bears were on a powerplay. Jeff Taffe passed the puck to Potulny who made a nifty backhand-to-forehand move and shovelled the puck goaltender Cedrick Desjardins.

The Bulldogs took advantage of a man advantage at 1:57 of the second stanza when Mike Blunden scored. After receiving the puck from Beaulieu, Blunden walked out of the far corner and snapped a shot over the shoulder of goaltender Braden Holtby to make the score 1-1.

Hershey took a 2-1 lead at 3:32 of the second period on Potulny’s second counter.
Hamilton again tied the game at 7:02 of the second frame on a tally by Patrick Holland. Brendon Nash’s point shot was stopped but the rebound came out to Holland who made no mistake.

The ‘Dogs took the lead at 17:36 of the middle stanza on a marker by Nattinen. Beaulieu took a point shot through traffic and Nattinen got the rebound and put the puck behind Holtby.

The Bulldogs’ next game is against the Lake Erie Monsters at Copps Coliseum on Tuesday (Dec. 11) at 7:30 p.m. for their annual Toy Toss game. Fans are encouraged to bring a stuffed toy to the game and when the Bulldogs score their first goal, fans can toss their items onto the ice.

Scoring summary

1st Period:
1. HER – Ryan Potulny (2) – (Jeff Taffe, Tomas Kundratek) – 5:48 (PP)

2nd Period:
2. HAM – Mike Blunden (4) – (Morgan Ellis, Nathan Beaulieu) – 1:57 (PP)
3. HER – Ryan Potulny (3) – (Steve Oleksy, Jeff Taffe) – 3:32
4. HAM – Patrick Holland (3) – (Brendon Nash, Brendan Gallagher) – 7:02
5. HAM – Joonas Nattinen (3) – (Michael Bournival, Nathan Beaulieu) – 17:36

3rd period:
No Scoring

Hershey: 8-7-8—23
Hamilton: 7-12-3—22

Power Play:
Hershey: 1-for-3
Hamilton: 1-for-2

Attendance: 9,411