In Charlotte’s first-ever game against the Hamilton Bulldogs, the home team lost by a score of 3-1.
The Checkers had a strong first period, outshooting the visiting team, and putting a great deal of offensive pressure on the Bulldogs.
Chad LaRose, who has three points in the last three games, after being held scoreless in his first five appearances with the Checkers, scored the lone goal for Charlotte, a backhander with 8.8 seconds left in the first period.
After the game, Coach Daniels seemed confident that LaRose is on the upswing early in the season with Charlotte.
“He’s getting his legs and timing back,” said Daniels, “You’re starting to see some flashes of what Rosey is capable of.”
The second period saw a very different Checkers team on the ice. After outshooting the Bulldogs 13-7 in the first period, they were held to only three shots in the second, and the Bulldogs scored two goals in under a minute.
Special teams were a big story during the afternoon matchup, specifically the fact that despite a total of 10 opportunities, both the Checkers and Bulldogs teams were held scoreless on the power play, which of course means both penalty kill units were perfect.
Ryan Murphy, who made his first appearance as a Checker this season following reassignment by the Hurricanes, saw a lot of ice time with his new teammates.
Though momentum seemed to return for the third period, it wasn’t enough to win the game, and the Checkers remain winless at home this season.
“They got a couple lucky goals and sucked the momentum right out of us…” said Murphy. “The more you lose, the more hungry you get and the more passionate you want to play, the more effort you want to put into the game. Because once the first one comes, hopefully the floodgates will open.”