After two strong games in Ottawa to start this series the Belleville Bulls find themselves down two games to none. The Bulls would drop Game 2 Friday night in the Nations Capital 4-2.
Belleville knew before the game that they had got the 67's attention Thursday night in Game 1. The result was a pre-game scrum, in the warm-up that lead to Ottawa's Captain Marc Zanetti taking a Match penalty for spearing before the game even started. The Bulls coaching staff called the penalty a compliment saying that "its means we are getting to them"
The rough stuff didn't end in the warm up. The teams combined for 34 minutes in penalties in the 1st period, and that doesn't included 10 minute misconducts to Belleville's Joesph Cramarossa and Ottawa's Tyler Graovac. The home side took two more minors in the 2nd and the visitors keep their noses clean the rest of the way. Both clubs were perfect on the PK, Belleville went 5/5 and Ottawa was 4/4. Both OTT and BEL had lengthy 5 on 3's.
The this game a real edge to it, at times it felt like you were waiting for something to break out after the whistle. The game was indeed OHL playoff hockey at its first round best. Both teams played with loads of intensity. Things got heated a couple times with Cramarossa and Graovac dropping the gloves as well as Adam Payerl and Dalton Smith.
The Bulls had 2 line up changes, rookie Jordan Subban who had a rough night in Game 1, was scratched in favor of veteran Branden Morris. Bulls also used John Chartrand as the back-up after using Charlie Graham in the first game. Mack Lemmon and Alex Carnevale were victims of the numbers.
Malcom Subban played in his 21st straight game including the regular season, and after a great effort in Game 1, he turned in a strong effort in game two as well. Malcolm faced 32 shots and stopped 29.
The Detroit Red Wings might have got an other later round gem in Petr Mrazek. The 5th round pick in the 2010 NHL Draft was great in Game 2. Mrazek turned away 44 of the 46 shots he faced. Petr was named the games 1st Star and made save after save on the Bulls, showing that he can be his teams best player when need be.
It was Ottawa getting the lead in the 1st, something Belleville is yet to do in the series, when Brett Gustavsen scored after some bad defensive play by the Bulls and a big rebound was kicked out by Subban. The goal came at 2:21 and was assisted by Remy Giftopoulos and Jake Cardwell. Belleville tied the game just under three minutes later at 5:18 when Micheal Curtis deflected home a Cramarossa shot. The goal was reviewed and was upheld. The 67's took a 2-1 lead in to the middle frame thanks to Sean Monahan who netted his first of the series at 9:53 from Graovac and Smith.
Belleville was out shot by Ottawa 13-12 in the 1st.
The second period was scoreless, but not without some good play from both sides. Both clubs killed off a 5-3, Both goalies played well with Belleville out shooting Ottawa 18-8.
The final frame was kinda like the first frame minus the penalties with the 67's scoring twice and the Bulls only able to lite the lamp once. At 4:59 it was Sean Monahan with his 2nd on the night from Tyler Toffoli, giving the home team a 3-1 lead. Belleville would tie it up when Joesph Cramarossa scored his 1st post season goal as a member of the Belleville Bulls. With the goal Cramarossa would complete the Gordie Howe Hat trick. Garrett Hooey and Carter Sandlak picked up apples on the play. If one dollar hot dogs weren't enough to send the crowd of 8598 home happy, Shane Prince did when he hit the empty net at 19:23 from Mike Cazzola and Cody Ceci, sealing the deal for the 67's 4-2. Belleville out shoot Ottawa 16-12 in the period and 46-33 in the game.
3 Stars 1- 67's Petr Mrazek 2- 67's Sean Monahan 3- Bulls Joseph Cramarossa
Belleville returns home on Sunday for a 2:00pm game, down two games in the series. To be successful and get back in this, Belleville needs to get production from their offensive leaders Brendan Gaunce, Austen Brassard and Daniil Zharkov. The Bulls top three regular seasons scoring leaders have combined for 1 point in the 1st two games. If Belleville wants to win those three and the power play that is 0/9 in the series have to get it going.