Five key takeaways from the Sydney Bears’ 3-0 loss against the Sydney Ice Dogs at Macquarie Ice Rink.
Feisty start to the game doesn't see rewards. The Bears' came out all guns blazing, but unfortunately so did their local rivals, both teams buoyed by a large crowd at Macquarie Ice Rink. The feistiness ultimately led to the Sydney Bears going on the penalty kill after just one minute, with Brian Funes called for hooking.
A strong penalty kill should've helped turn the tide but the Bears weren't able to solve Damien Ketlo as the game came back to them with the Ice Dogs next to concede a whistle; Stephen Johnston sent for an errant slash.
Rebound proves costly. A rebound off of Anthony Kimlin in net was the difference maker as the Ice Dogs pounced following a successful penalty kill of their own. Lachlan Shumak was able to net after a David Dunwoodie shot came back out off of Kimlin.
This goal, rather than kill the Bears' momentum, seemed to amp them up more with the team putting fifteen shots on Ketlo across the first period alone.
Countless penalties follow as the game got tense. Nick Riavit and Jeremy Brucker saw their names go down for ten minute misconducts, whilst there were also roughing penalties dished out for both teams as tempers flared.
Daniel Pataky then saw time in the box after a scuffle with Michael Schlamp midway through the second period before Shumak found himself in hot water after a check to a Bears' head. These penalties saw any attempt to make the game flow stifled.
Shorthanded goal puts the nail in the coffin. A shorthanded breakaway by Grant Toumlin essentiually ended the game for the Sydney Bears, who despite having plenty of shots through the second, still couldn't solve Ketlo; thirteen shots proved fruitless.
Toumlin's goal seemingly took the air out of the Bears' sails - try as they might, they couldn't muster the same level of offence in the third period and the writing was on the wall.
Further scuffles followed in the third. Tyler Noseworthy sat for an elbow, Tyerell Clare for roughing to the credit of the youngster, for tackling Dogs' veteran Dunwoodie.
With Kimlin pulled from the net with the Bears on the powerplay, the last roll of the dice could've seen a remarkable comeback. It wasn't to be though, as Scott Stephenson sealed a 3-0 victory for the Ice Dogs with a shorthanded empty netter with forty seconds left.
Despite the scoreline, the Sydney Bears put up a strong fight, mixing it with the Ice Dogs physically and also with the offensive power. The difference maker though was once again the goaltending of Ketlo, the Dogs' Canadian import.
The result sees the Ice Dogs leap-frog the Bears in the ladder and jump back into the top four and contention for the Finals' Weekend. There is still plenty of time to change thast at least.
Photo Credit: Jeff Reingold
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