From: Robert Desimone
, Communications Manager
, Asst. Communications Manager
GILLIES SCORES GAME WINNING GOAL IN SHOOTOUT
HOUSTON – The Houston Aeros (6-4-0-0) erased another late third period deficit Tuesday and scored on the final three shots in the shootout to defeat the Hamilton Bulldogs 4-3 in front of 3,134 at Toyota Center. RW Jon DiSalvatore tied the game with 3:38 remaining and LW Colton Gillies scored the game winning goal in the shootout; G Wade Dubielewicz (2-2-0) made 28 saves for his second win in as many starts.
"Hamilton hasn’t lost in regulation so that obviously makes them a team that’s doing a lot of good things," Aeros Head Coach Kevin Constantine said. "So to get a win against them in a lot of ways is a big accomplishment."
The Aeros again came out with a strong first period of play. C Nathan Smith rifled a shot top shelf to beat Hamilton G Cedrick Desjardins (2-0-1) off a backhand pass from RW J-M Daoust 2:44 into the game. The helper extended Daoust’s team lead to six points (2-4=6). Hamilton would answer just under 10 minutes later off a goal from D Yannick Weber; C Ryan White would get credit for the assist. Houston tallied 12 shots in the first period to Hamilton’s nine.
Houston entered the game with the top ranked penalty kill in the AHL at 96.8% and would be tested as the Bulldogs received four consecutive power-plays in the second period, including a 5-on-3 for 1:28. The penalty kill again came up strong and killed off all four power play opportunities in the period.
“I thought the biggest moment of the game was when we killed, not just the 3-on-5, certainly the 3-on-5, but the momentum that we saved for ourselves with the penalty kills.” Constantine said.
Neither team was able to control the first half of the third period and the Bulldogs finally took their first lead of the game at 10:54 off the stick of LW Tom Pyatt. The Aeros answered just 47 seconds later with Earl’s third of the year when he took the puck from the behind the net and banked it of the back of Desjardins. Hamilton again took the lead as White found the net at 14:21 for his second point of the night. DiSalvatore would answer for the Aeros, however, with 3:38 remaining in regulation off assists from C Chad Rau and Gillies.
The Bulldogs gave the Aeros back-to-back powerplays at the end of regulation and in overtime, but the penalty kill again won the battle as the Aeros were unable to score and the teams headed to a shootout. Hamilton took a commanding two goals to none advantage after two shots, but Dubielewicz stopped the final three shots and Aeros got goals from Daoust, Rau and Gillies to take the victory.
“It was interesting in that we had to come from behind the whole game and we had to come from behind in the shootout,” Constantine said. “The shootout paralleled the whole game, that was kind of interesting to me. We won three in a row so I take my hat off to these guys, they’re finding a way to win and we’re just going to keep working on things and trying to get better.
The Aeros were held scoreless on the man advantage extending their streak to 27 straight power play opportunities without a goal, while their league-best penalty kill went 5-for-5. Hamilton led in shots on goal 31-29 and Desjardins made 25 saves in the shootout loss.
The Aeros hit the road for back-to-back games in Grand Rapids starting Thursday. Game time is scheduled for 6 p.m. (CST) and can be heard on 1070 AM KNTH as well as ahllive.com.
Wade Dubielewicz Save
Jon DiSalvatore Goal
Colton Gillies GWG
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