By Rod MawhoodRyan Strome
's return to the IceDogs line-up was certainly a memorable one. Just hours after the New York Islanders returned their fifth overall pick to Niagara, the 18-year old scored two first period goals, then completed the hat-trick with a dandy snapshot from the slot 6:34 into the third, as the Dogs' cruised to a 5-0 victory over the Belleville Bulls.
Niagara outshot Belleville 53-25 overall, including 19-5 in the first period.
The other story line in the game was the return of Mark Visentin. The 2010 Phoenix Coyotes first round pick suffered a groin injury earlier in the season, and not only registered the shutout, but also picked up his first win of the 2011 campaign.Mitchell Theoret
, the Dickies Hardest Working Player of the game, and Dougie Hamilton had the other IceDogs goals as Niagara went a stellar 3-for-4 on the powerplay.
Former IceDog John Chartrand made 48 saves in the loss.
Niagara improves to 3-4-1 with the win and now embark on a Michigan road trip. Friday night the Dogs' are in Plymouth before visiting Saginaw on Saturday.
The IceDogs return home next Thursday night against their Eastern Conference rival Ottawa 67's for a 7 p-m puck drop.
Tickets are now on sale and can be purchased at the Pen Centre in St. Catharines, Seaway Mall in Welland, and at the IceDogs office located at 35 Queen Street in downtown St. Catharines.
For more information call 905-687-DOG1 (3641).
With Strome's return on Thursday, the only regular still out of the IceDogs line-up is Tampa Bay draftee Brock Beukeboom.