How did the weekend go for the Belleville Bulls ? Well Friday night they where on top of the World in St.Catharines winning 7-2 over the Niagara Icedogs and picking up their first victory since November 27th 2009 at the Jack Gatecliff Arena. And then Saturday night Vs Owen Sound at home it was the hard fall back to Earth with a 4-0 loss to the Attack.
The 7 goals scored at the "Jack" were more then the Bulls had scored in their last 5 trips combined. They held some practises on the smaller ice surfaces at the Quinte Sport and Wellness Centre leading up to the game, maybe it worked ? It worked for Captain Brendan Gaunce. The Vancouver Canucks prospect was very good picking 1G & 3A. He was a plus 6 on the night and was named the games 1st Star. Gaunce wasn't alone, Minnesota Wild draft pick Tyler Graovac also picked up for points with 2G & 2A and was also plus 6. Gaunce was quoted on the Bulls web site saying what an impact Graovac and the newly acquired Alan Quine have had on the line up. "The guys we've brought in here aren't just adding to the overall skill level," Gaunce said. "Graovac and Quine have also boosted the performances of the player around them and guys, including myself, are feeding off the confidence we've all gained. The chemistry we've had injected into our lineup as been huge offensively.".
The 1st period ended tied 2-2. Niagara got the games 1st goal at 12:24 on the power play from Ryan Strome. It was the Islanders prospect's 23rd on the season assisted by Tyler Mort and Aaron Haydon. Then Belleville would answer with 2 goal in 24 seconds. At 14:03 Stephen Silas would get his first goal of the game and his 4th overall from Joesph Cramarossa (Anaheim) and Alan Quine (Detroit). Graovac scored the next goal at 14:27 from Jake Worrad and Austen Brassard (Winnipeg). Shots in the 1st where 19-9 in Belleville's favour.
OA Silas had the 3rd multi-goal game of his career scoring 2 goals including the game winner in the 2nd period. Silas' goal was the first of five that the Bulls would score in a row. Gaunce (17) unassisted and Jake Cardwell (8) from Graovac rounded out the scoring in the second. Belleville had the edge in shots again firing 14 on net while Niagara had 8.
In the 3rd it was Belleville out shooting the Icedogs 13-7 and out scoring them 2-0 to win the game 7-2. Graovac scored his second of the game and 24th on the year from Gaunce and Quine at 12:48. Belleville's 7th goal of the game was scored by Micheal Curtis from Gaunce at 16:26. The goal gives Curtis 9 on the year. It was real nice to see the Mississauga native get a goal, he played a great game doing all the things that Coach Burnett asks killing penalties and blocking shots and working his tail off at both ends of the ice,
Malcolm Subban made his 1st start for the Belleville Bulls since a 3-1 victory over the Rangers on December 7th in Kitchener. The Bruin's prospect did look great , but he didn't look bad. He'd probably admit that the second goal he would like to have back, but he got stronger as the game went on, and was strong when the Bulls killed a 2 man Niagara advantage. It was nice to see the Bulls step up for Malcolm. Its not always easy coming back to the OHL after playing in a tournament as high of calibre as the World Jr Championships. Its a different pace, and different skill level. He faced 24 shots and will continue to adjust back to life in the OHL
Saturday, January 19, 2013
Belleville came in to this game on a four game winning streak that had seen them out score their opponents 25-9. Belleville is known for being a fine defencive team but in the last four games their offencive had become their best defencive. Everything was rolling. (minus the power play that went 0/6 the night before), the new lines were still clicking, the penalty killing unit was strong as ever, Charlie Graham has played great and Malcolm Subban was making his 2nd straight start.