Saturday, 12 December 2015

Bulldogs 4 - Warriors 2

The West Kelowna Warriors fell 4-2 to the Alberni Valley Bulldogs on Friday night in a game that slipped away in the third period.

The two teams felt each other out at the start of the night, as there weren't too many scoring chances in the opening twenty minutes, and not many shots on goal either. The Warriors had the best chances of the first period on a pair of breakaways, but failed to convert. Jonathan Desbiens had another glorious chance too as he walked out of the corner, but Brody Claeys stood tall for the Dogs.

The games first goal came in the 2nd period, as the Bulldogs opened the scoring. Nathan Dingmann walked around the Warriors defense and snapped a shot short side to make it 1-0. The Warriors responded on the power play from Kyle Marino, as he poked one over the line after Garrett Forster sent one on goal, and Reed Gunville popped it free.

With Jake Harrison in the box right after the tying goal, Kylar Hope forechecked hard on the dump in, and forced Claeys to play the puck. Claeys played it right into Dingmann and onto the end boards, where Hope stole it and wrapped one around and into the goal for the 2-1 lead. That is where the 3rd period would begin on the scoreboard.

Just 22 seconds into the 3rd, a turnover at the blueline allowed Eric Margo to snap one past Clark's pad and tie the game. Then, the Bulldogs took the lead on a strange goal. With Quinn Syrydiuk going to the net, a saucer pass missed him from Josh Adkins, yet ended up right in the Warriors goal.  As Evan Hammond put it on the Bulldogs broadcast, he just plain whiffed on it. I couldn't tell if it had hit something on the way to the goal, but watching the video and it goes right in the corner of the net on the pass from the side boards.

With the Warriors on a late power play trying to even the score, Harrison was unable to keep the puck in at the line and Adkins made it 4-2 on a short-handed breakaway goal. West Kelowna scrambled in the final 2 minutes with the net empty, but were unable to find a goal to get within 1.

Game Thoughts:

  • The Warriors have lost 3 straight games for the first time this season, including a pair to island teams. Once again the Warriors did a great job limiting the shots against, but couldn't get a save when they needed it. West Kelowna allows just 27.2 Shots/Game, while averaging over 38 on the opposition each night. In 22 of 32 games, the Warriors have allowed 30 or less shots.
  • Kylar Hope continued his point streak and moved it to 11 games. He's also on a 4-game goal scoring streak, and has moved into 27th on the Warriors All-Time Scoring list.
  • The positives of the Warriors special teams include a 100% penalty kill (+ short-handed goal) and the power-play goal. However, West Kelowna also allowed a pair of shorthanded goals that changed the game in the Bulldogs favour.

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