Question: Why did the Manitoba Moose cross the train tracks? Answer: They didn’t. They only made it half-way before they were struck broadside by the Hamilton Bulldogs Express train.
The Dogs mashed the Moose by the scores of 2-0 and 8-2 in the first two games of the North Division Semi-Finals and continued to set franchise records, just as the team has done all season long.
The series between the two hockey clubs got underway on Thursday April 15th at Copps Coliseum in Hamilton, with the 1st place Bulldogs hosting the 4th place Moose. The opening game was a very low-shooting, defensively-oriented matchup by both teams. The final shots on goal were only 21-18.
Bulldogs Head Coach, Guy Boucher, was quoted in the Hamilton Spectator newspaper as saying, “It’s just a patience game and that’s what we thought it would be and that’s what we’re expecting for the rest of the series. We’re expecting a lot of one-goal games.”
Mike Glumac began the scoring at 5:54 of the first period when he blasted a rocket of a shot past Manitoba goaltender, Cory Schneider. The goal was assisted by P.K. Subban and Ryan White.
Following a scoreless second period, Ryan Russell, assisted by Ryan White and Andre Benoit, gave the Bulldogs a 2-0 lead on the scoreboard at 3:37 of the third period. Despite Manitoba’s efforts to break the shutout of Cedrick Desjardins, this goal would stand as the winner as the Hamilton Bulldogs defeated the Manitoba Moose by the final score of 2-0.
If defence and patience was the key to victory in Game #1, the Dogs must have decided that they had been patient long enough. In Game #2 on Saturday April 17th, Hamilton’s big guns came into action and the hometown Bulldogs hunted down and destroyed the Moose by a final score of 8-2.
David Desharnais, Ryan Russell, P.K. Subban, Mike Glumac, Brock Trotter (2), J.T. Wyman, and Alex Henry scored the goals. The various assists were provided by P.K. Subban (2), Andre Benoit (2), Grant Stevenson, Brock Trotter, Mike Vernace, Shawn Belle, David Desharnais, Chad Anderson, and Aaron Palushaj.
Even Cedrick Desjardins got in on the action, as he provided an assist as well on Ryan Russell’s goal at 2:24 of the second period.
It should also be mentioned that J.T. Wyman’s goal was scored on a shorthanded penalty shot and was the second penalty shot goal scored in Bulldogs playoff history.
The eight goals scored in this game tied a franchise record for the most goals scored in a playoff game and sets a new franchise record for the largest margin of victory in a playoff game.
With the Hamilton Bulldogs leading the North Division battle 2-0, the series now moves to Winnipeg, Manitoba for Game #3, Game #4, and Game #5.