Bulldogs Too Much for Monsters

After beating Hamilton by multiple goals in each of their three previous meetings at Quicken Loans Arena, the Lake Erie Monsters surrendered a 4-1 loss to the Bulldogs in front of 12,407 at The Q on Friday night. Despite the loss, the Monsters finished their eight-game regular season series with a 5-3-0-0 record against their North Division rivals from Hamilton.

With the loss, the Monsters hold an overall record of 40-27-3-5, while they are 22-11-2-3 on home ice.

Hamilton took a 1-0 lead at 14:19 of the opening period and maintained at least a one-goal advantage for the rest of the game. After Danny Masse tried a wrist shot from the right hash mark, he gathered his own rebound and flipped in a backhand shot on a second attempt. Jimmy Bonneau and Alexander Avtsin assisted.

The Bulldogs carried their one-goal lead into the first intermission, but the Monsters led by an 11-6 shot count after the opening 20 minutes.

In the middle frame, Hamilton made the score 2-0 when Olivier Fortier scored off assists from Brendon Nash and Avtsin at the 5:51 mark.

The Monsters got on the board at 15:25 of the period, when Ben Walter broke into the Hamilton zone, weaved through traffic and chipped a backhand shot into the net to make the score 2-1. Walter’s goal came as his 13th point (3G, 10A) in his last eight games, while David van der Gulik assisted for his 12th point (2G, 10A) in his last eight outings. Julien Brouillette also recorded a helper, marking his second assist in as many games.

The Monsters recorded eight shots in the second period, compared to only two by Hamilton, which ties a season low for shots against Lake Erie in a single frame.

In the third period, the Bulldogs used a power play to take a 3-1 lead in the early phases of the frame. From the top of the goal crease, Dustin Boyd knocked in the rebound of a Nigel Dawes shot. Aaron Palushaj also assisted.

With Lake Erie goaltender John Grahame pulled in favor of an extra attacker, Hamilton’s J.T. Wyman scored an empty-net tally to solidify a 4-1 game.

Grahame stopped 13 of 16 shots faced in the loss, while Drew MacIntyre went 27-for-28 in net for the Bulldogs.

The Monsters will continue North Division play on Saturday when they travel to Toronto for a 5:00 p.m. faceoff against the Marlies.

Three Stars: 1. HAM Fortier (GW goal); 2. HAM Avtsin (2 assists); 3. LE Walter (1 goal)

David Quinn Postgame Interview


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