For JARED MCCANN, Saturday had already been a long day. But the Greyhound forward who left for an airport early in the day, then flew to Toronto before travelling back to Belleville, that wasn’t about to stop him from rejoining his team.
With the Hounds in Belleville for their only regular season visit of the season, #19 arrived at the rink with minutes remaining in warm-up and would be ready for the opening face-off.
The game marked the Hounds 2nd stop on their Eastern Ontario swing, and capped off their regular season meetings with the Bulls.
NICK COUSINS, playing in his hometown, would open the scoring 7:56 into the first period. After COLIN MILLER jumped into the middle of the offensive zone his pass found Cousins to the left of Charlie Graham for his 17th of the season.
Belleville had a good opportunity to tie things when Aaron Berisha was given a feed at the slot but his point blank shot failed to beat MATT MURRAY.
The Hounds made it a 2-0 lead when a nice sequence of passing ended with the puck at the left point to RYAN SPROUL. The Hounds rearguard blasted home his 12th goal of the year, and 7th in the last five games.
The Bulls would get on the board in the final minute of the period when three men broke into the zone before Berisha’s shot from the left circle got through and the Hounds lead was trimmed to 2-1 after twenty minutes.
Following a penalty in the dying seconds of the first, the Hounds started the second period on the man advantage but were unable to increase their lead any further.
And from their the Bulls offense, despite being the lowest scoring team in the OHL began to come to the forefront.
Captain Brendan Gaunce evened the score 3:10 into the period getting around the Hounds defence on the left wing before firing a shot through and a 2-2 tie.
Just over a minute later, with the Bulls on the powerplay, Austen Brassard took advantage of a Hounds failed clearing attempt and was in the right spot to fire home a rebound on Murray and the Bulls took their first lead of the night.
Jake Worrad from the far cycle at 6:41 and then Gaunce who was credited with a shot that went off a body and past the Hounds netminder, added additional goals as Belleville led 5-2 with under five minutes to play in the period.
Then just as the buzzer would sound, the Bulls faithful thought they may have witnessed their 6th goal of the night but it was deemed the puck crossed the line after the end of the period, and the Hounds trailed 5-2 after forty minutes.
JUSTIN NICHOLS would start the third period for the Hounds, relieving MURRAY who would end the night with 16 saves on 21 shots faced.
Newly-acquired Tyler Graovac would notch his first goal as a Bull, and 22nd of the season at the 4:21 mark breaking in on a 2-on-1 rush, before sliding the puck five-hole on Nichols and the deficit was up to four goals.
Despite a glorious powerplay chance that saw Graham rob BRANDON ALDERSON, the two teams would skate the rest of the way without further offense and the Hounds two-game winning streak was snapped in a 6-2 loss.
With a 1-1 record on the trip so far, the Hounds will now head into Kingston on Sunday afternoon (2 p.m. start, 1:35 pre-game on Rock 101) with a record of 20 wins, 18 losses and 2 overtime losses, good for 42 points
SHOTS ON GOAL
Belleville – 10-11-6= 27
Hounds – 12-9-11=32