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67’s edged by Hamilton in playoff opener

OTTAWA, ON – The Ottawa 67’s fell 6-3 to the Hamilton Bulldogs in Game 1 of their first-round playoff series Thursday night, but served noticed that this series is very much up for grabs.

The Bulldogs now lead the best-of-seven series 1-0.

Ottawa opened the scoring and, despited falling behind a couple times, displayed plenty of the come-from-behind character that turned many heads down the stretch this season. Defenceman Noel Hoefenmayer led the way in that regard, scoring twice and adding an assist in a solid road game for the eighth-seed 67’s.

The 67’s opened the scoring at the 13-minute mark of the first period as Sam Bitten scored his first of the post-season to put the visitors ahead. Matthew Strome would tie things up for Hamilton late in the first before Benjamin Gleason scored early in the second to put Hamilton ahead 2-1.

Hoefenmayer’s first of the game would knot things up at the midway mark of the second and the Arizona Coyotes prospect would add his second – after a Hamilton goal by Robert Thomas – to again knot things up.

The back-and-forth continued 43 seconds after Ottawa had evened the score as Hamilton’s Brandon Saigeon found the back of the net to put the home team back in front. Saigeon would score again in the third and Thomas would score his second into an empty net to add insurance for Hamilton.

The 67’s will remain on the road as they prepare for Sunday’s Game 2 rematch against the Bulldogs.

GAME NOTES

  • The 67’s (2-for-5) and Bulldogs (2-for-4) each had a pair of powerplay goals.
  • Ottawa edged Hamilton 33-27 in the face-off circle.
  • Tye Felhaber led the 67’s with four shots in the game.
  • Olivier Tremblay made 19 save for Ottawa, while Kaden Fulcher stopped 20 shots for Hamilton.
  • With the opening goal, Ottawa’s Sam Bitten takes an early lead over Hamilton’s Will Bitten in the Battle of the Bitten Brothers.

OHL PLAYOFF SCHEDULE – ROUND 1

Game 1: Thursday, March 22nd @ Hamilton 7PM (HAM 5 – OTT 3)
Game 2: Sunday, March 25th @ Hamilton 7PM
Game 3: Tuesday, March 27th @ Ottawa 7PM
Game 4: Wednesday, March 28th @ Ottawa 7PM
Game 5: Friday, March 30th @ Hamilton 7PM**
Game 6: Sunday, April 1st @ Ottawa 2PM**
Game 7: Tuesday, April 3rd @ Hamilton 7PM**
**If necessary

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