HAMILTON – After jumping out to a commanding 3-0 lead, the Syracuse Crunch gave up four unanswered goals in the second period and fell to the Hamilton Bulldogs 4-3 on Friday at Copps Coliseum.
Just 45 seconds into the game, Aaron Rome took a cross-ice pass from Mike York and wristed the Crunch’s first shot on goal of the evening past Hamilton (21-11-2-0) rookie goaltender Loic Lacasse, who was making his first AHL start.
Steve Kelly scored on a rebound a minute later to extend the Syracuse (15-16-1-2) lead to two. Syracuse’s John Vigilante found the rebound of a Rome point shot at 18:57 to make it 3-0.
Hamilton got one back at the 11:46 mark of the second when Yannick Lehoux found a wide open Thomas Beauregard all alone in front on the power play.
The momentum turned in Hamilton’s favour after that, as Mike Glumac’s point shot on another Bulldogs’ power-play opportunity just 42 seconds later cut the Crunch’s lead to 3-2.
Hamilton tied the game at 3-3 just a minute later when a sloppy line change cost the Crunch a 3-on-1 break against them and Ryan White deposited a cross-ice feed from Shawn Belle past a helpless Dan LaCosta.
The second period nightmare continued for the Crunch when Hamilton notched their fourth goal and third power-play goal when Beauregard broke free with two Crunch defenders on him and slipped the puck through LaCosta’s pads to give the Bulldogs a 4-3 lead with 1:05 remaining in the period.
LaCosta finished with 35 saves for Syracuse while his counterpart Lacasse stopped 21 shots en route to his first AHL victory.