The Eagle Builders Centre in Blackfalds was near-full Friday night, but Bulldogs fans left disappointed with a loss.
The game provided excitement, mind you. The Camrose Kodiaks had a 1-0 lead through one thanks to a goal by captain Callum Gau, and managed to extend that lead thanks to a tidy finish from Carson Whyte. Kodiaks goaltender Robert Andreakos spent the first half of the game looking near-unbeatable, batting aside every chance Blackfalds threw his way.
However, before the second period was over, Bulldogs captain Brett Meerman fired in his fourth goal of the year, taking a pass from Tanner Willick and finally finding a way past Andreakos. Blackfalds spent most of the first two periods in control of the game, but Camrose came out flying at the start of the third. Owen Dean fired in a 3-1 goal just over one minute in to the period, and immediately off the ensuing faceoff, Camrose’s Gau found the puck, found a lane to the net, and beat Bulldogs goaltender Matthew Hennessey over the left shoulder to make it 4-1, just eleven seconds after their third goal. The Kodiaks would strike once more, as a foray of shots sent Matthew Hennessey’s way eventually ended up with Whyte finding a rebound for his second of the game, giving Camrose a 5-1 lead. With Andreakos continuing to play like a reincarnated version of Patrick Roy, the Bulldogs looked sunk, but there was still some life in Doug Quinn’s team.
Just before the halfway point of the third period, Brendan Ross found himself with a little bit of space near the Kodiaks blueline, took two steps towards the middle of the ice, and crushed a slapshot past Andreakos’ glove, giving Blackfalds a lifeline. With just under four minutes to go, on the power play, Meerman’s one-timed slapshot took a couple of deflections before ending up on the stick of Tyler Wallace at the top of the crease. Wallace beat Andreakos past his blocker, and you could feel the mood in the building shift with some hope reignited. With the goaltender pulled, Meerman found Tanner Willick with a beautiful cross-scene pass. Willick was denied by the goaltender, but Ross found Andreakos’ five-hole, and with 1:59 to go, only one goal separated the two teams. Blackfalds threw everything they could towards the Camrose net, but the Kodiaks would hang on. Robert Andreakos will go to a perfect (3-0-0) on the season, and Blackfalds falls to (1-2-0).
Next up for the Bulldogs, a Saturday night date with the Brooks Bandits.
Article by Aidan Serra.