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Hamilton Bulldogs swept aside by heavily favoured Ottawa

The Ottawa 67's eliminated the Hamilton Bulldogs from the 2019 OHL playoffs in four games. Hamilton Bulldogs

It is over and out for the Hamilton Bulldogs.

The top-seeded Ottawa 67’s blasted Hamilton 7-2 Wednesday night to complete a four-game sweep of their first-round OHL playoff series.

The 67’s raced out to a 4-0 lead in the opening frame, outshooting the defending Ontario Hockey League champions 21-4 in the process.

Cameron Tolnai, Noel Hoefenmayer, Merrick Rippon, Marco Rossi and Mitchell Hoelscher all found the back of the Bulldogs net to put the game out of reach before it had hit its midway point.

Hamilton’s Eric Henderson deflected the puck past Ottawa goalie Michael DiPietro with 5:35 to play in the second period to break the Bulldogs’ goose egg, but it was 5-1 at that point and the 67’s were never really tested the rest of the way.

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Kody Clark responded just over two minutes after Henderson’s goal to extend Ottawa’s lead, and Lucas Chiodo made it 7-1 for the visitors when he buried a goal on a breakaway 7:48 into the final period.

The Bulldogs’ only other tally came from Frank Jenkins, who scored his first career playoff goal with 5:45 remaining in regulation.

READ MORE: Guelph Storm top Kitchener Rangers in Game 3, one win away from advancing

The contest may have been the final game for Hamilton captain Matthew Strome.

The 20-year-old is eligible to return for one more season in the Ontario Hockey League, but Strome says his goal is to be playing in the NHL next season.

The Mississauga native was drafted by the Philadelphia Flyers in the fourth round (106th overall) in 2017.

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“It feels like just yesterday I was walking in for my first training camp and now it feels like it’s all over,” said Strome, who had an assist in the loss. “It’s a little sad, but I mean, hopefully, there’s bigger things to look up to after this.”

Ottawa outshot the Dogs 45-27 in front of 4,630 fans at the FirstOntario Centre.

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