The Alberni Valley Bulldogs’ first game of the shortened B.C. Hockey League season was a barnburner. The game was one of five played league wide, and the first of the Island Division “pod” games, which will all be played at the Alberni Valley Multiplex.
The Bulldogs and Victoria Grizzlies combined for 11 goals as the Grizzlies defeated the Alberni 6-5 in a shootout.
The Bulldogs scored their first goal in 137 days just 30 seconds into the game courtesy of Brandon Buhr to take a 1-0 lead.
Three unanswered Victoria goals by Henri Schreifels and two from Ellis Rickwood gave the Grizzlies a 3–1 lead heading into the first intermission.
The Bulldogs came out strong in the second period, scoring two quick goals 26 seconds apart—Lukas Jirousek on the power play and Adam Jeffery to tie it up at 3-3. Chase Klassen put the Bulldogs ahead 4-3 at 14:41 of the second.
Victoria cut the momentum less than a minute into the third period with Rickwood’s hat trick. Buhr put the Bulldogs up 5-4 at 10:49 of the third, but Rickwood—with his fourth goal of the game—tied it up at 13:42 and the game headed into overtime.
After a scoreless first overtime period, the Grizzlies’ Schreifels scored in a shootout to win the game 6–5.
The Grizzlies scored three times on the power play while the Bulldogs scored once with the man advantage.
The Bulldogs are back on the ice Saturday, April 3 at 7 p.m. when they face Cowichan Capitals.
ICE CHIPS…Victoria Grizzlies and Nanaimo Clippers will face off at 1 p.m. at the Multiplex on Saturday. Fans are not permitted in the rink, but games are being streamed live on www.hockeytv.com. A subscription is required. Bulldogs’ games can also be heard on 93.3 PEAK FM with play-by-play announcer Evan Hammond.