The Belleville Senators were narrowly beaten 2-1 by the Manitoba Moose Friday night in Winnipeg.
Rudolfs Balcers had the Sens’ (0-2-0-0) lone goal while Mike McKenna turned aside 26 shots in goal. Manitoba (1-2-0-0) had goals from Seth Griffith and Mason Appleton while Eric Comrie made 26 saves.
The Sens fell behind early at 3:22 through Griffith as he streaked down the left wing before beating McKenna with a sharp wrister for his first goal of the campaign.
Belleville came close to an equalizer in the final minute of the period as newcomer Adam Tambellini rattled the crossbar before the puck trickled just wide of the post as the Sens came on strong in the second half of the frame.
Belleville tied the game at 1-1 at 16:04 of the second period through Balcers as he buried a rebound after Drake Batherson’s initial shot had been saved by Comrie with Filip Chlapik collecting the secondary assist.
The hosts re-took the lead on the power play at 4:46 of the third through Appleton who buried a loose puck after Griffith had driven the net causing a mess in front of the Belleville goal.
The Sens had an opportunity to tie the game in the final 2:30 as Michael Spacek was called for hooking but Belleville couldn’t find a way to beat Comrie as they dropped their second straight game to start the season.
Head Coach Troy Mann felt they deserved a better fate.
Mann said they need to get a bit grittier around the opponent’s net.
The Senators went 0-for-6 on the man advantage with Manitoba converting once on four chances. Batherson’s assist was his first point as a professional.
Batherson said it was good to get it out of the way.
Belleville is back in action Saturday as they square off with the Moose once again.CJBQ will have that game for you beginning at 6:50 p.m. with Jack Miller.
Belleville’s home opener is Oct. 17 against Binghamton at CAA Arena.