Petti’s hat trick gives Bulldogs 6th straight win
The win streak keeps on growing.
Niki Petti scored three times, including twice in a massive third period, to lift the Hamilton Bulldogs over the host Barrie Colts on Thursday. The 8-3 win was the club’s sixth straight, and the hat trick Petti’s first in a five-year OHL career.
The Colts got into penalty trouble early, giving the Bulldogs three power play opportunities in the opening eight minutes. The visitors capitalized on two of them.
Petti struck first, shovelling the puck past Christian Propp in a scramble to give the Bulldogs the lead. Connor Roberts doubled it when he tipped a Cole Candella point shot behind the rookie goaltender just a few shifts later.
Curtis Douglas responded for Barrie before the end of the frame, picking up a loose puck out front and popping it past Dawson Carty. Hamilton quickly regained its twogoal advantage, though, with Will Bitten finding Michael Cramarossa on a 2-on-1 a few minutes into the second.
For the rest of the period it was all Barrie, with Zachary Magwood and Luca Chiodo both tallying to level the score. Then, in the third, it was all Hamilton.
Petti scored his second of the game less than four minutes in, and later tacked on another for good measure. Matthew Strome, Marian Studenic and Jack Hanley also scored, while Carty shut down the Colts at the opposite end. He had 25 saves in his sixth straight win.
Thursday’s game was the last of four regular season meetings between the teams. After losing the first matchup in Barrie, the Bulldogs rebounded with back-to-backto-back wins to take the series.
Hamilton went into Barrie deadlocked with the Kingston Frontenacs in fourth place in the Eastern Conference standings. The Colts, meanwhile, had lost all but two of their last 10 games and were deep in the OHL basement.
The Bulldogs continue their three-game road trip in Ottawa on Saturday and Kingston on Sunday. With a couple more wins this weekend and a little bit of luck, they could clinch a playoff spot for the first time in six years. The last time the Bulldogs made the post-season was 2011, when they were still Montreal’s minor league AHL affiliate. NOTES: Bulldogs defenceman Reilly Webb made his season debut Thursday. The 17-year-old from Stoney Creek has been sidelined since training camp, when he separated his shoulder — an injury that required surgery.