(Photo: Victoria Grizzlies)
The Alberni Valley Bulldogs (17-15-2-1) host the Victoria Grizzlies (16-12-4-2) in the back half of a home-and-home set. The Bulldogs pulled out a 5-4 OT win Friday night at the Q Centre.
Will Elger played the role of the hero for the Bulldogs as he scored twice, including the OT winner to deliver the Bulldogs a 7th straight win.
It wasn’t easy for the Bulldogs as they built a 4-2 3rd period lead before the Grizzlies roared back to force OT and earn a very important point in the Coastal Conference standings. The Bulldogs enter action tonight, just 1 point behind the Grizzlies with 37 points.
Cam VanSickle (11), Dakota MacIntosh (8) and Chase Klassen (7) also scored in the Bulldogs win. For Elger, his pair of goals were his 10th and 11th goals of his rookie campaign. Elger also added an assist for a 3 point night and earned himself 1st star honours.
Hobie Hedquist stopped 32 of 36 shots for another win in goal. The final shots favoured the Bulldogs 40-36.
As the scene now shifts back to Dawg Pound, the Bulldogs will look to push their season-high winning streak to 8 games, and their home-ice winning streak to 6 games.
Returning home should be a huge boost for the Bulldogs as the atmosphere last night at the Q Centre was a little on the sleepy side, outside of the few dozen Bulldogs fans who took over when the Bulldogs scored. The Dawg Pound has been electric of late and more of the same is expected tonight as fans won’t get a chance to see the Bulldogs at home until February 18th after this game. Tonight’s crowd should be one of the largest of the season.
With 7 straight wins, the Bulldogs are officially the hottest team in the BCHL. In fact, no other club has more than a 3 game winning streak currently. As shown last night, taking your foot off of the gas, even for a few minutes can put things in jeopardy.
Ethan Bono and Nicholas Beneteau are currently riding 5-game point streaks heading into action tonight. Beneteau, a St. Lawrence commit currently leads the Bulldogs in scoring with 27 points, 2 better than Bono. Matthew Maltais (UNO) and Will Elger (Providence) are hot on their heels. Depth has been a huge contributor to the Bulldogs success, especially of late.
The Bulldogs were without Brandon Buhr, AJ Vasko, and David Sacco last night. All three 20-year old forwards are considered day-to-day with their various ailments. The line-up got a boost last night with the return of Holy Cross commit Matt Kursonis, and local product Caden Tremblay. Tremblay drew back into the line-up at forward to help make up for the absence of the three twenty year olds.
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