Defensive lapse costs Bulldogs sixth straight setback

bulldogsWho says lightning doesn’t strike twice in the same place?

For the second time in a week, the Hamilton Bulldogs surrendered a batch of goal in quick succession and this time it cost them a 5-3 American Hockey League loss to Lake Erie Monsters. On Friday night (Nov. 15), the Bulldogs gave up four goals in a span of six minutes that saw a lead of 2-0 melt away into the club’s sixth straight defeat for a record of 5-7-0-3.

Last Friday, the Bulldogs coughed up four goals in 73 seconds in losing to Grand Rapids.

Hamilton had staked its self to a two goal lead on markers from Justin Courtnall in the first period and Joonas Nattinen in the second frame at Copps Coliseum.

Just over two minutes after Nattinen’s second goal of the season, the Monsters began their scary charge. Defenceman Gabriel Beaupre got the Monsters on the board at 5:43 of the second period and was followed by Guillaume Desbiens, 35 seconds later, then Stefan Elliott
1:57 after that to make it a 3-2 Monsters lead, before Mitchell Heard put another nail into the coffin at 11:44.

Mike Blunden notched his third goal of the season at 12:32 of the third period to close the gap to 4-3 but with 3:41 remaining in the third period, J.T. Wyman potted Lake Erie’s final goal of the game.

Robert Mayer got the start in goal for the Bulldogs, making 15 saves on 19 shots in 31 minutes of action. Dustin Tokarski took over in relief after the visitors fourth goal, making nine saves on 10 shots.

Sami Aittokallio made 31 saves on 34 shots for the Monsters.

Both teams went 0-for-5 on the power play.

Hamilton’s next game is scheduled for Saturday (Nov. 16), when they travel to Cleveland to take on the Monsters (AHL affiliate of the Colorado Avalanche) at 7 p.m. at Quicken Loans Arena. The ’Dogs return to Copps on Tuesday (Nov. 19) when they will host the Texas Stars (AHL affiliate of the Dallas Stars) at 7:30 p.m.

Making his debut for the Bulldogs was forward Christian Thomas who been assigned to the team by the Montreal Canadiens. Bulldogs. The 21-year-old forward had missed the first 14 games of the season due to injury.

Thomas split last season between the New York Rangers and Connecticut Whale. In one regular season game with New York, he had no points and no penalty minutes. In 73 regular season games with Connecticut, he recorded 35 points (19 goals, 16 assists) and 15 penalty minutes. He was originally selected by the Rangers in the second round (40th overall) in the 2010 National Hockey League Entry Draft. He was acquired by the Canadiens from the Rangers in exchange for forward Danny Kristo on July 2, 2013.

He had a minus-three effort on Friday night.

Scoring summary

1st Period:
1. HAM – Justin Courtnall (2) – (Gabriel Dumont, Jarred Tinordi) – 8:27

2nd Period:
2. HAM – Joonas Nattinen (2) – (Stefan Fournier, Steve Quailer) – 3:04
3. LE – Gabriel Beaupre (2) – (Mitchell Heard) – 5:43
4. LE – Guillaume Desbiens (2) – (Stefan Elliott, Mitchell Heard) – 6:18
5. LE – Stefan Elliott (3) – (Joey Hishon) – 8:15
6. LE – Mitchell Heard (1) – (Tyson Barrie, J.T. Wyman) – 11:44

3rd Period:
7. HAM – Mike Blunden (3) – (Joonas Nattinen, Steve Quailer) – 12:32
8. LE – J.T. Wyman (2) – (Markus Lauridsen, Stefan Elliott) – 16:19


Lake Erie: 0-4-1
Hamilton: 1-1-1


Lake Erie: 9-16-4–29
Hamilton: 7-16-11–34

Attendance: 3,545