Datsyukian Diaco Goal Give Bulldogs Sunday Shootout Win
HAMILTON, ONTARIO. For the first time in 787 days the Hamilton Bulldogs met the Erie Otter on Sunday afternoon at the FirstOntario Centre in a back-and-forth contest that featured the Ontario Hockey League debut of Bulldogs defenseman Noah Roberts.
To open the game, the debuting Roberts had the first tremendous chance of the game sneaking off the left point to be denied by Otters' goaltender Nolan Lalonde. Erie would open the scoring at 3:16 as Matteo Drobac would make an initial stop on an Owain Johnston shot but the rebound fell right to Daniel D'Amato, firing the puck past the Bulldogs netminder giving the Otters the 1-0 lead. Hamilton would battle back, earning a 5-on-3 power-play and off the ensuing faceoff Jan Mysak won the puck to George Diaco who set the puck on a tee for a Nathan Staios blast, scoring his 6th of the year and tying the game 1-1 at 15:45.
Drobac & Lalonde were the story of the 2nd period with the netminders going save for save and at times in incredible fashion until the 17:01 mark. George Diaco drove the right-wing side dropping the puck off at the top of the circle for Jan Mysak who found Avery Hayes in the left circle with a picture- perfect backhand saucer pass that Hayes one-timed past Lalonde for his 11th of the year giving the Bulldogs a 2-1 lead. Drobac made sure the score line would remain that way through 40 minutes with an incredible split save on a Brendan Hoffman shorthanded breakaway.
The Otters put a full ice press on the Bulldogs in the third, firing 14 shots to Drobac's goal and at 12:49 they found the tying goal on Daniel D'Amato's second as he worked off the right and into the slot for the shot. Through 60 minutes the score remained tied 2-2, and 5 minutes of 3-on-3 would solve nothing sending the game to the shootout.
Matteo Drobac, in his first career OHL shootout, turned aside all three Otters' shooters while George Diaco scored on a Datsyukian deke for the only goal of the shootout giving the Bulldogs the 3-2 victory.
The Hamilton Bulldogs return to action on Wednesday, December 8th, hosting the Oshawa Generals in the TiCats Game at FirstOntario Centre with puck drop at 7:00pm.
For more information on Hamilton Bulldogs 2021-22 season tickets, flex packs or single game tickets call 905-529-8500 or visit hamiltonbulldogs.com.
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