Blake Geoffrion scores 2 as Bulldogs rally to beat Americans

Blake Geoffrion scored twice as the Hamilton Bulldogs scored four goals in the third period en route to a 4-3 victory over the Rochester Americans in American Hockey League action Saturday.
Blake Geoffrion, seen with the Montreal Canadiens in March, has four goals and two assists in eight games with their AHL affiliate in Hamilton. (Graham Hughes/Canadian Press)

The Hamilton Bulldogs scored four goals in the third period en route to a 4-3 victory over the Rochester Americans in American Hockey League action Saturday.

Blake Geoffrion scored twice, and Brendan Gallagher and Mike Blunden added goals for the Bulldogs (4-2-2), while Robert Mayer stopped 24-of-27 shots.

Brian Flynn had two goals and Nick Tamasky added the third for the Americans (6-3-1), and Connor Knapp made 30 saves in a losing effort.

The hosts had an early opportunity to open the scoring after Rochester's T.J. Brennan was whistled for roughing at 1:32 of the first. Brennan's retaliatory action came after a controversial hit by the Bulldogs' Aaron Palushaj that the Americans deemed to be late.

Rochester's Mark Mancari was then penalized for cross-checking midway, giving Hamilton a two-man advantage for 44 seconds. But the hosts could not make the most of their opportunity and the game remained scoreless.

The visitors were afforded a two-man advantage of their own to conclude the period, after Hamilton's Mike Blunden was whistled for cross checking at 17:50 and Mayer was penalized for delay of game at 18:17.

But the Americans were also unable to capitalize on the minute and 33 seconds of five-on-three play, and the period came to an end without a goal.

The frenetic first included 27 total shots on goal, with Rochester goaltender Knapp making 15 saves and Mayer adding 12 for Hamilton.

The visitors opened the scoring early in the second as a power play came to an end.

Rochester winger Marcus Foligno grabbed a Hamilton giveaway and found Flynn with a centring pass. His fellow winger did the rest, beating Mayer with a wrist shot over the shoulder.

The goal at 2:38 was Flynn's second of the season and moved Rochester into a 1-0 lead.

Hamilton nearly equalized four minutes later, but winger Patrick Holland could only hit the post when facing a gaping net.

The visitors punished the Bulldogs' inability to finish chances, doubling their advantage at 12:28 of the second.

Flynn produced a scintillating effort for his second goal of the night, corralling a pass from centre Zemgus Girgensons and firing a heavy wrist shot from the top of the left circle that sailed over Mayer's blocking glove.

The Bulldogs cut their deficit in half at 9:42 of the third, when a shot from the point was juggled by Knapp and Geoffrion poked the puck past the sprawled goaltender.

No Hodgson for Amerks

Riding the momentum of their goal, Hamilton struck again just over two minutes later. Patrick Holland's initial shot landed at the feet of Gallagher, who snapped a quick shot past Knapp to tie the game at two.

The Bulldogs took the lead just over a minute later, after the Americans' Joe Finley was penalized for roughing at 14:03.

Nathan Beaulieu's point shot was tipped in by Blunden at 13:54 to give the hosts their first lead of the game.

Geoffrion added an insurance goal in short order, depositing Aaron Palushaj's rebound past Knapp following a two-on-one break. The goal was Geoffrion's fourth of the season and second of the game.

Tamasky scored a consolation goal for the Americans at 16:22.

Rochester centre Cody Hodgson sat out Saturday's game due to injury.