The Bulldogs have another three games on tap this week with another three-in-four schedule seeing them open up Wednesday in Nanaimo for the first of a home and home set with the Clippers.
Nanaimo then makes their first visit of the season to the Dog Pound Friday night, before the Dogs are again back to the Bear Mountain Arena Saturday to visit the Grizzlies and finish off the week.
The meeting in Nanaimo Wednesday will be the second of the season between the two clubs, with the Clippers prevailing 6-2 over the Dogs at the Frank Crane on September 26th. This was a tight game after 40 minutes, with the Clippers leading 2-1. The third period was one to forget for the Dogs, as penalties killed their chances when back to back power play goals just minutes apart by the Clippers made it 4-1 before the period was six minutes old. One more for good measure seconds later made it a 5-1 game and it was all but over. The Dogs got one on the power play to make it 5-2, but another Clipper power play marker ? their third of the game, made it 6-2.
The Clippers enter this week with a record of 7-3-0 and 2, good for second in the Island Division, and third in the Coastal Conference. The Clippers last played on Sunday afternoon, where they broke a two game losing streak with a 4-1 victory over the Burnaby Express, the team that had beat them twice in a row going into the game. The Clippers got off to a great start in the this one, taking a 1-0 lead 1:45 into the first with a power play goal from Ian Thistlethwaite set up by Tyler Pistone and Steve Mason. The lead was 2-0 after one with another goal from the back end, as Michael Boivin scored from Pistone and Mason again with 2:43 left in the period. The score stayed at 2-0 through most of the second, but the Clippers blew the game open late in the period with two goals in just ten seconds to lead 4-0 after forty. First it was Tyler Pistone at 16:29, and then Steve Mason at 16:39. The Express trimmed the gap to 4-1 13:58 into the third but that was as close as they would get.
The Clippers were 1 for 5 on the power play while Burnaby was 0 for 8. Shots favoured Nanaimo 25-21 with Evan Smith picking up the win in net.
Wednesday?s pregame show from the Frank Crane Arena kicks off at 7:15 with the puck drop and all the play-by-play shortly after 7:30. Catch all the action on your radio on 93.3 The Peak FM or the BCHL Fanzone at www.bchl.bc.ca
Friday?s pregame show from the Dog Pound begins at 6:45; the play-by-play will follow at 7:00.
Saturday the Bulldogs and Grizzlies meet again, for the fifth time this season already, at the third time at Bear Mountain Arena. The last time the two teams met was just last Friday in Victoria, a 3-1 Grizzlies win. The game was scoreless after two periods, before the Dogs took a 1-0 lead on a Ben Payne power play goal just short of the eight minute mark of the third. Four minutes later the Grizzlies tied it with Evan Pighin finding the net, and they then went ahead 2-1 just two minutes later with Myles MacRae getting the eventual game winner. A minute later Tyler Gubb scored to put the Grizz up 3-1 and it was game over.
The Grizzlies enter this week with a record of 11 and 2, riding an eight game winning streak. They last played on Saturday night when they beat the Burnaby Express 6-1 at Bear Mountain Arena. Justin Courtnall gave the Grizzlies a 1-0 lead before the first was five minutes old, and just over a minute later it was 2-0 with Evan Pighin scoring on the power play. The Express would get one back to make it 2-1, but Justin Courtnall restored the two goal lead with his second of the game coming in the final two minutes of the first period on the power play for a 3-1 Victoria lead after one. Two more power play goals in the second made it 4-1 and then 5-1, with Tyler Matheson scoring just short of the game?s halfway mark and then Evan Pighin finding the net at 13:11 of the second. Myles MacRae finished the scoring on the night when he made it 6-1 with 2:43 left in the period.
Shots favoured Victoria 32-23 with Alexandre Peck picking up the win in net. Special teams were a factor ? the Grizzlies went 4 for 10 on the power play while Burnaby was 0 for 3.
While the Dogs will be playing their third game in four days Saturday night, the Grizzlies will be seeing their first action in seven days. This can work both ways of course. The Dogs might be more ready to go from the opening puck drop, while the Grizzlies might have more in the tank later in the game. The Dogs will no doubt be bringing the same game plan as the last game in Victoria ? a defence first, patient and plodding game, as it worked well for MOST of the game last time out. If they hope to pick up their first win against the Grizzlies this time, 60 minutes will be key, not most of the game.
The pregame show takes to the air at 6:55pm and the puck drop and all the play-by-play is at 7:10. Catch all the action on 93.3 The Peak FM and through the BCHL Fanzone at www.bchl.bc.ca
Game Day Audio ? ?Last Three, Next Three? Click the links to listen