It was game one of a home and home series with the Eastern Conference Hamilton Bulldogs Friday night, where both teams took turns dominating the game. The Wolves held off the Bulldogs to win by a 6-4 final, and now sit just one point behind the Bulldogs for first place in the conference heading into Saturday rematch.
The Wolves brought the fans to their feet in the first period, coming out with lots of energy and outplaying the Bulldogs. It was DMITRY SOKOLOV who opened the scoring for the Wolves after he poked home RYAN VALENTINI’s shot. MICHAEL PEZZETTA scored next for the Wolves with a beautiful wrist shot beating COLE CECI top shelf. Three minutes later, it was CONNOR ROBERTS who beat JAKE MCGRATH to cut the Wolves lead in half. Wolves rookie SHANE BULITKA had a great chance on a short-handed breakaway but could not beat CECI. The Wolves added one more goal from ALAN LYSZCZARCZYK to close up the first leading 3-1.
SOKOLOV stole the show to start the second period scoring two back-to-back goals earning himself a hat trick. Penalties for the Wolves allowed the Bulldogs the opportunity to begin to apply some pressure. MCGRATH stayed composed in net allowing only one goal in the period from Bulldogs ISAAC NURSE on 19 shots. The Bulldogs outshot the Wolves 19-9 in the period but trailed 5-2 after 20 minutes.
The Bulldogs continued to dominate the play in the second period battling back to put themselves within 1 goal. Goals from the Bulldogs came from MATTHEW STROME and TRENT FOX. It was PEZZETTA who sealed the deal for the Wolves with an empty net goal in the final minute of the game. With no love lost between the teams, a scrum ensued after the final buzzer with both teams exchanging words. The teams will battle each other once again tomorrow night in Hamilton. Final shots on goal were 40-35 in favour of the Bulldogs
The Sudbury Wolves will hit the road tomorrow morning to complete a busy weekend travelling to Hamilton for a 7:00pm game and to Oshawa on Sunday to take on the Generals. Game time 6:05pm. Fans can follow the Wolves though social media on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
The Wolves are back in action at home next Friday when the Peterborough Petes come to town. To purchase tickets, visit the Sudbury Arena Box Office, call 705-671-3000 or visit greatersudbury.ca/tickets.