The Bulls cannot not overcome their troubles against Ontario as they drop tonight’s game five to two. Ontario maintained its control throughout most of the game. The Bulls managed to pull the game within in one as they got late goals from Dean Ouellet and Peter Sivak, but the Reign would hold on off the late charge giving them an eight and one record over the Bulls on the season.
Ontario came charging out of the gates as they maintained their edge over the Bulls by taking the first period. Two quick goals by Ontario would put the Bulls in an early hole. Matthew Clune opened the scoring at 7:34 in the first period with his first goal of the season. The Bulls’ troubles would compound quickly as the Reign would extend their lead just 22 seconds later with a goal from C.J. Stretch, his 23rd on the season. Everett Sheen and Kyle Kraemer picked up assists on both goals. The first period was clean period as neither team took a penalty. The Reign out shot the Bulls 12 to nine.
The theme of the second period would be how poorly the power play has been for the Bulls. They were given three opportunities with the man advantage in the second. The first came eight minutes into the second as Justin Pender would be called for holding. The Bulls would get nothing to show for it as they could not solve Jean-Francois Berube. The second power play would be devastating for the Bulls hopes in trying to mount a comeback. The Reign’s rookie sensation Mario Lamoreaux would capitalize on a short handed breakaway opportunity to put the Bulls down by three. The Bulls out shot the Reign 11 to eight.
The third period would see this game get interesting as the intensity picked up. Two Ontario penalties would give the Bulls some momentum as they got back to back power plays. It would be the second power play that would see the Bulls finally breakthrough as Dean Ouellet would beat Berube for his 22nd goal of the season. Cody Carlson and Sebastian Trudeau would combine on the assists. The game would get even tighter as Peter Sivak would score his 21st goal of the season with just 2:45 left in the game, cutting the lead to just a goal. The back breaker came just a minute later as C.J. Stretch beat Nelson for his second goal of the game putting the Reign up four to two. Kyle Kraemer would put the game away with an empty net goal to make the final five to two. The Bulls out shot the Reign 30 to 29 on the night.
The Ontario offense was just too much for the Bulls to handle. Nelson had himself an off night as he only stopped 24 of 28 shots. The short handed goal by Lamoreaux turned out the be the difference as the Bulls were only able to net two. Dean Ouellet would net his 22nd on the season* and Peter Sivak would net his 21st of the season. The Bulls fall to 17-22-6 on the season, while Ontario takes over first place with a record of 32-10-3. The Bulls will get several days to rest up as they do not return to the ice until next Wednesday, February 6th as they take on the Las Vegas Wranglers.
*Rob Kwiet’s goal from yesterday was changed to Dean Ouellet.
- C.J. Stretch – Ontario
- Mario Lamoreaux – Ontario
- Dean Ouellet – San Francisco