The Steelheads hosted the Hamilton Bulldogs Friday night looking to pick up their first win of the regular season. With both teams coming off losses, the determination to get the win tonight was high.
Emanuel Vella made his Steelheads debut between the pipes, while Kaden Fulcher started in goal for the Bulldogs. Things were a little slow out of the gate as neither team generated many scoring opportunities. The Bulldogs were awarded a power play opportunity late in the frame as Shaw Boomhower would head to the box to serve two-minutes for tripping. The man-advantage would carry over to the second period as the clock ran out 10-seconds into the penalty. The Steelheads trailed the Bulldogs 8-10 on the shot clock after the first 20 minutes of play.
The Bulldogs started the second period on the man-advantage, but were unable to capitalize as the game returned to even strength. Boomhower would head back to the box along with Hamilton’s Lemke at 8:18 on coincidental roughing calls. Mississauga would see their first power play opportunity of the game at 13:45 as Jake Murray would sit for two on a hooking call. Unfortunately, they were unable to capitalize before the game returned to even-strength. With 3:30 remaining in the second, Mississauga native Matthew Strome found the back of the net to give the Bulldogs a 1-0 lead. Vella made an amazing initial save on the play, but was unable to stop the rebound as Strome tapped home his first of the season. The opening goal was assisted by Lemke and Bitten. Shots on goal in the second period were 13-7 in favour of the Bulldogs, and the Steelheads trailed by one on the scoresheet.
Coming into the third period, the Steelheads looked to cut the deficit. Kaden Fulcher made many big saves to keep the Steelheads off the board and preserve the Bulldogs’ 1-0 lead. Just past the halfway mark of the third, Bulldogs’ forward, Isaac Nurse bought the visitors some insurance, scoring his second of the season from Connor McMichael to give the Bulldogs a 2-0 lead. Despite many opportunities, the Steelheads could not capitalize as the visiting Hamilton Bulldogs skated to a 2-0 victory. Fulcher stopped all 25 shots his first shutout of the season.
The Steelheads look to bounce back tomorrow as they visit the Owen Sound Attack for a 7:30 PM start.