Fresh faces help ‘Dogs to 2-1 series lead

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Gabriel Dumont and Olivier Fortier each scored his first professional goal, and Brock Trotter posted two assists as Hamilton rallied for a 3-2 road win over Abbotsford on Wednesday, giving the Bulldogs a 2-1 series lead in the North Division Finals.

Game 4 will be back at the Abbotsford Entertainment & Sports Centre on Thursday night.

The Heat grabbed leads of 1-0 and 2-1 in this contest, as Jon Rheault and Brett Sutter both connected for first-period power play goals, with a Bulldog man-advantage marker off the stick of defenseman Andre Benoit in between.

The 19-year-old Dumont, making his professional debut after putting up 93 points (51-42-93) this season for Drummondville (QMJHL), tied it back up for the Bulldogs late in the second period.

Dumont’s goal, which also came on the power play, was assisted by Trotter and defenseman Mike Vernace.

Fortier followed just 2:05 later with the eventual game-winner, with Tim Conboy and Ryan Russell earning assists. Fortier, a third-round draft pick by the Montreal Canadiens in 2007, spent his junior career with Rimouski (QMJHL).

Abbotsford pressed for the equalizer in the third period and wound up with a 10-3 shots advantage over the final 20 minutes, but the Heat couldn’t tie it and fell to 1-3 at home this postseason.

Bulldogs goaltender Cedrick Desjardins (6-3) stopped 31 of 33 shots in the winning effort.

Hamilton wound up 2-for-6 on the power play, while Abbotsford converted both of its opportunities.

North Division Finals – Series “K” (best-of-7)
N1-Hamilton Bulldogs vs. N3-Abbotsford Heat

Game 1 – Thu., Apr. 29 – Abbotsford 3, HAMILTON 2
Game 2 – Sun., May 2 – HAMILTON 3, Abbotsford 1
Game 3 – Tue., May 4 – Hamilton 3, ABBOTSFORD 2
Game 4 – Thu., May 6 – Hamilton at Abbotsford, 10:00
Game 5 – Sat., May 8 – Hamilton at Abbotsford, 10:00
*Game 6 – Mon., May 10 – Abbotsford at Hamilton, 7:30
*Game 7 – Tue., May 11 – Abbotsford at Hamilton, 7:30