Playoffs over for Bulldogs… but what a great season!



Sunday’s 4-2 loss to the Walkerton Hawks in game six of the best-of-seven series means the season’s over for the Kincardine Bulldogs. And what a season it was, with plenty of great hockey for fans.


The Bulldogs took the first two games of the series, but the Hawks came back to win four in a row, starting with a narrow 3-2 win in Walkerton on the holiday Monday.


After a scoreless first period, Kincardine got on the scoreboard with a power play goal by Payton Dunlop from Logan Freiburgerabd Jesse Carnahan. Walkerton replied with two, but Joshua Traynor scored from Keegan Angel and Trevor Donaldson to tie the score by the end of the second period.


Walkerton’s Reid Simmons scored early in the third, and the Hawks won the game.


Back on home ice Wednesday, Feb. 23, the Bulldogs started off strong, with a pair of goals – Hunter Robins-Gibbons on the power play from Logan Swanton and Freiburger, and Tyler Sutter unassisted. Less than a minute into the second period, Walkerton tied the score. Kincardine’s Derrick Bernath scored a beauty of a short-handed goal from Brady Richards, but then the Hawks took control of the game. Final score was 7-3. This tied the series at two games each.


Game five Friday night in Walkerton, the Bulldogs made a valiant last-minute effort to tie the game, but the Hawks ended up winning 5-4. The first period started off in Kincardine’s favour – goals by Dunlop on the power play from Mike Fiegehen, Angel from Brett Burrows, and Jordan Caskenette from Freiburger and Fiegehen, put the score at 3-1 by the end of the period.


Walkerton came back and took control in the second period, scoring three times to take the lead, and again on the power play in the third period to gain a two-goal lead. Kincardine pulled their goalie to give an extra attacker, and Burrows scored from Fiegehen and Caskenette to close the gap. But they couldn’t tie the score and lost 5-4. This put the Hawks ahead by a game in the series, and they travelled to Kincardine Sunday afternoon looking for a fourth win to take the series. Game six was a must-win for Kincardine.


Sunday’s game was over an hour late getting started – it’s likely one of the few times game officials have been cheered as they skated onto the ice.


Despite being hammered by Walkerton’s offence in the first period, Kincardine led 1-0 – Burrows on the power play from Dunlop. Walkerton scored a pair of power play goals in the second to take the lead, but Fiegehen – also on the power play – scored from Frieburger and Robins-Gibbons to tie the score. That’s where the score remained until late in the third period when Walkerton scored, and put another into the empty Kincardine net to end the game, and the series, at 4-2.


Although Kincardine fans were disappointed, they’re proud of their Bulldogs and look forward to an even more exciting PJHL season in this coming fall.