Abbotsford Heat
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Despite a hard-fought effort, Max Reinhart and the Abbotsford Heat suffered a slow defeat to the Hamilton Bulldogs on Sunday night.
Photo: SendToNews/Hamilton Bulldogs

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Bulldogs hand Heat their first regulation defeat

The Hamilton Bulldogs accomplished two things against the Abbotsford Heat on Sunday that no opposing team had previously this season.

Aaron Palushaj's man-advantage goal at 10:38 of the second period was the first power-play marker the Heat have surrendered over the first seven games of the campaign, and it stood up as the game-winner in the Bulldogs' 2-1 triumph at Copps Coliseum. It was the first regulation-time loss for Abbotsford (4-1-2) this season.

All the scoring came in the middle frame. Heat forward Roman Horak continued his red-hot play, opening the scoring at the 3:36 mark. It was his AHL-leading seventh goal of the season (Drayson Bowman of the Charlotte Checkers also has seven), and extended his point streak to seven games.

But Hamilton's Blake Geoffrion would level the score less than three minutes later, and Palushaj got the go-ahead marker with Adam Estoclet in the penalty box for slashing. The goal snapped Abby's season-opening streak of 26 successful penalty kills, but they still lead the AHL with a 96.4 per cent PK efficiency.

Danny Taylor stopped 28 of 30 shots in the losing effort, while his Toronto counterpart Robert Mayer picked up the win with a 28-save outing.

• Up next for the Heat is a two-game home set against the Toronto Marlies. The puck drops at 7 p.m. on Thursday and Friday at the Abbotsford Entertainment and Sports Centre.

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