Big weekend for Bulldogs


By Josh Howald

The Nicol Insurance Kincardine Bulldogs welcomed back two important players, won two important hockey games and pulled themselves into a tie for third place overall in the Provincial Junior Hockey League Pollock Division standings.

And they did it on the road. The 'Dogs went into Wingham Friday night and posted a 4-1 win and followed that up with a 3-1 win in Mitchell Saturday night. The Bulldogs improved to 8-6-1-2, good for 19 points - one point out of second and five points back of the league leaders from Mount Forest.

Late last week the 'Dogs announced the signings of Logan Freiburger and Logan Swanton.

"Both Logans helped our line-up," said Kincardine head coach Shawn Burrows. "The entire team played great all weekend."

Freiburger played with the Bulldogs two seasons ago, but spent last year with the Pelham Panthers of the Greater Ontario Junior Hockey League. This year he was out to a good start with the Elliott Lake Wildcats of the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League with six goals and 12 points in 15 games of Tier II Junior A. Swanton, meanwhile, is a defenceman who played the last two seasons with the Bulldogs. He had been with Listowel of the GOJHL this season.

Both players were in the line-up Friday night in Wingham during a 4-1 win over the Ironmen. Derrick Bernath opened the scoring from Tyler Sutter and Hunter Robins-Gibbons but Kyle Stanbury answered back for Wingham four minutes later. Keegan Angel and Brett Burrows scored second period goals to give the 'Dogs a 3-1 lead headed for the third. Grant Stevens assisted on Angel's goal, the eventual game winner, while Burrows had help from Mike Feigehen and Freiburger. It was a power play goal late in the second period.

Jordan Caskanette had the only goal of the third period, scoring from Angel late in the frame. Goaltender Ethan Primeau posted the win with 25 stops. Kyle Morning stopped 26 of 29 Kincardine shots and is tagged with the loss.

The next night in Mitchell, Kincardine peppered the Hawks in the early going. They outshot the hosts 17-6 in the opening frame.

"We had a very good first period," said Burrows. "We came out flying."

Sutter struck first with a shorthanded effort from Frieburger and Robert White. Bernath made it 2-0 three minutes later from Trevor Donaldson and Justin Marlowe. The second period was scoreless and the 'Dogs stretched the lead to 3-0 when Fiegehen scored his fifth goal of the year on a power play midway through the third period. Bernath and Damian Demarco-Sutton drew the assists. Jamie Shoemaker broke Craig Luinstra's shutout bid with just 29 seconds remaining and goaltender Tyler Parr on the bench for an extra attacker. It was a 3-1 final, with Luinstra making 22 saves for the win.

The Bulldogs will be on the road again Friday night, with an 8 p.m. game at the P&H Centre in Hanover against the Barons. Kincardine will return home for a Sunday afternoon game against the Mount Forest Patriots at the Davidson Centre. The puck will drop at 3:55 p.m. in that one.