In his first start of the season veteran goaltender Curtis Sanford stopped 19 of 20 shots and Hamilton scored twice in the third period for a 3-1 win over visiting Manitoba on Tuesday before just over 2400 fans at Copps Coliseum.

An 11th-year pro, Sanford suffered a fractured larynx in a preseason practice after taking a puck in the throat and missed the season’s first four weeks and eight games.  (Read more about Sanford’s injury here)

Sanford, who won a career-best 23 games in 41 appearances for Hamilton last season (23-11-3, 2.13, .916), earned the victory over a Moose team for whom he played during the 2008-09 campaign.

Max Pacioretty recorded a power play goal and an assist. Aaron Palushaj and Mathieu Carle scored the others.

With his two point night, Pacioretty moves into a tie for second place in Bulldogs scoring with 2 goals and eight assists in nine games.  Yannick Weber, who did not register a point for the second straight game, also has ten points.  The team leader, David Desharnais, had one assist in Tuesday’s game. His total is 3 goals, ten assists. 

It was Hamilton’s fifth win of the season.  They are in a three way tie for the Western Conference’s North Division lead with 13 points with Rochester and Abbotsford.  The Bulldogs, however, have two games in hand over Rochester and three over Abbotsford.

The Bulldogs will host Manitoba Wednesday night in the second of the back to back games in Hamilton.

Scoring Summary:
1st Period:
1. HAM – Max Pacioretty – 2 (Aaron Palushaj, Frederic St. Denis) – 17:43 (PP)

2nd Period:
2. MTB – Cody Hodgson – 3 (Sergei Shirokov) – 7:21

3rd Period:
3. HAM – Mathieu Carle – 2 (David Desharnais) – 1:10
4. HAM – Aaron Palushaj – 1 (Frederic St. Denis, Max Pacioretty) – 19:58 (EN)

Scoring:
Manitoba: 0-1-0-1

Hamilton: 1-0-2-3

Shots:
Manitoba: 7-9-4–20
Hamilton: 8-12-9–29
Goaltending:
Hamilton: Curtis Sanford (20 shots, 19 saves)
Manitoba: Eddie Lack (28 shots, 26 saves)

Power Play:
Hamilton: 1-for-6
Manitoba: 0-for-7

Attendance: 2,468

Three Stars:
1. HAM – Max Pacioretty (1 goal, 1 assist, +1, 5 shots)
2. MAN – Cody Hodgson (1 goal, 4 shots)
3. HAM – Mathieu Carle (1 goal, +2, 1 shot)

# Player GP G A PTS +/- PIM PP SHG SOG SH%
51 David Desharnais 9 3 10 13 4 2 1 0 25 0.120
7 Yannick Weber 9 6 4 10 -1 10 3 0 27 0.222
23 Max Pacioretty 9 2 8 10 3 8 1 0 41 0.049
19 Ben Maxwell 9 3 6 9 1 4 2 0 30 0.100
4 Brendon Nash 9 2 4 6 4 10 2 0 11 0.182
28 Aaron Palushaj 4 1 5 6 3 2 0 0 9 0.111
32 Frederic St. Denis 9 0 5 5 0 2 0 0 5 0.000
12 Andrew Conboy 9 3 1 4 1 18 0 0 14 0.214
20 Ryan Russell 9 2 2 4 2 4 0 0 21 0.095
10 J.T. Wyman 9 2 2 4 -2 6 1 0 17 0.118
22 Andreas Engqvist 9 1 3 4 1 6 0 0 12 0.083
25 Ryan White 9 0 4 4 1 11 0 0 22 0.000
15 Kyle Klubertanz 7 2 1 3 2 2 0 0 12 0.167
72 Mathieu Carle 9 2 0 2 5 6 0 0 9 0.222
26 Alexander Avtsin 2 1 1 2 3 0 0 0 2 0.500
40 Gabriel Dumont 9 1 1 2 -2 4 0 0 17 0.059
5 Alex Henry 9 0 2 2 -1 23 0 0 8 0.000
85 Neil Petruic 2 0 1 1 -1 2 0 0 1 0.000
18 Dany Masse (X) 1 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 0.000
1 Curtis Sanford 1 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 0.000
45 Peter Delmas 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.000
14 Olivier Fortier 4 0 0 0 -1 0 0 0 1 0.000
35 Robert Mayer 6 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.000
24 Ian Schultz 7 0 0 0 -1 9 0 0 5 0.000
44 Jimmy Bonneau 9 0 0 0 -2 21 0 0 5 0.000
  BENCH 9 0       4     0  
  TOTALS 9 31 60 91 19 158 10 0 294 0.105
# Goalies GP Mins W L SL SO GA GAA SVS SV%
1 Curtis Sanford 1 60 1 0 0 0 1 1.00 19 0.950
45 Peter Delmas 2 125 1 0 1 0 4 1.92 56 0.933
35 Robert Mayer 6 368 3 2 1 0 18 2.94 130 0.878
  TOTALS 9 553 5 2 2 0 23 2.50 205 0.899