Overtime losses for Bulldogs

Section: 
Sports

By Josh Howald

There were no wins, but still a couple of points for the Nicol Insurance Kincardine Bulldogs on the weekend.

Kincardine dropped two overtime decisions on the weekend, one to Walkerton Friday night at home and one in Mitchell Sunday evening.

"We played well this weekend," said head coach Shawn Burrows. "Obviously we would have loved to win those games, but we are happy with a two-point weekend against two very good teams."

The two points do move Kincardine out of sixth place and into fifth in the Pollock Division of the Provincial Junior Hockey League. The Bulldogs are now 2-4-0-2 in regular season action.

Friday night at home, the 'Dogs were badly outshot and trailed for the majority of the game but were able to force overtime against the visiting Walkerton Hawks.

Josh Deyell and Quinton Maddock scored first period goals four minutes apart to give the Hawks a 2-0 lead after one period. Keegan Angel scored from Mike Fieghen early in the second period to cut the lead to 2-1. Kincardine netminder Ethan Primeau stopped a penalty shot from Brandon Boley late in the middle frame to keep the 'Dogs in striking distance.

Josh Traynor pulled Kincardine even just 16 seconds into the third period. It was a power play goal from Angel and Hunter Robins-Gibbons. But 41 seconds into 3-on-3 overtime, Gary Mantz scored from Deyell to give Walkerton two points.

The Hawks outshot the Bulldogs 47-28. Primeau was very good in the Kincardine net. Cody vanderHeide, who started for the Hanover Barons for most of last season, picked up the win in his first game as a Walkerton Hawk.

"Both our goalies played well this weekend and gave us a chance to win," said Burrows.

Primeau got the nod Friday, and on Sunday it was Craig Luinstra's turn. Luinstra made 37 saves in a 2-1 overtime loss to the Mitchell Hawks. Kincardine was outshot 36-29.

Unfortunately, the Hawks scored the game winning goal on a power play in the extra period after Luinstra took a minor penalty for intentionally knocking the net off its moorings. That isn't the way Burrows saw it happen.

"He was just going post-to-post, I didn't think it was on purpose," said Burrows Monday.

The teams traded first period goals. Jamie Shoemaker scored for Mitchell and Robins-Gibbons replied for Kincardine ten minutes later.

That was all the scoring until 4:31 of overtime. Blake Pickering scored the dagger while Mitchell was playing 4-on-3 to give Mitchell the OT win and two points.  Curtis Laviolette posted the win in goal for the Hawks.

While Burrows was pleased with two points from the weekend, four would have been better.

"We're still taking too many penalties, and we're still having trouble burying our chances," he said.

It wouldn't shock anyone if General Manager Doug Kennedy acquired a goal scoring forward - or two - as soon as possible. It has become apparent the 'Dogs need help putting the puck in the net.

Up next for the Bulldogs is a trip to Hanover Friday night. The 'Dogs will take on the Barons at the P&H Centre at 8 p.m. then return home for a Saturday night date against the Penetang Kings. That game is a 7:25 p.m. start, following the WOAA Senior AA game between Ripley and Saugeen Shores as part of the Hockey Day in Kincardine festivities.