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Buzzeo’s Hat Trick Leads Glads

Sunday, February 7th
Buzzeo’s Hat Trick Leads Glads

From the start of the game, Saturday night belonged to Justin Buzzeo. Just eight seconds into the Gladiators game against Brampton, Buzzeo stole the puck from a Beast defender and netted a shot from the left circle to get Atlanta on board, breaking Tom Zanoski’s previous franchise record for fastest goal in a game by two seconds. The unassisted score was Buzzeo's sixth goal of the season and gave him 16 points on the year.The visiting Brampton Beast answered at the 13:46 mark of the first period, evening the score at 1-1. Nick McParland skated down the ice and powered a shot from beyond the right circle through the legs of Gladiators goaltender, Kent Patterson. Luc-Olivier Blain and Chris Auger were credited with the assists on McParland's third goal of the season.After a scoreless second period, Buzzeo scored a second quick goal for the Gladiators just 33 seconds into the third frame. The rookie took a shot from the right circle that sent the puck ricocheting off Beast defenders in front and into the back of the net. Max Everson and Brock Higgs were credited with the assists on Buzzeo's 7th goal of the season.Everson would add to the scoring for the Gladiators less than three minutes later to extend the lead to 3-1. With the puck in the right circle, Buzzeo gave Everson a backdoor pass which the rookie was able to one-time past the diving Beast goaltender, Jordan Ruby. Buzzeo notched his third point of the night while Barteaux collected his 11th assist on Everson's 10th goal of the season and second point of the contest.Brampton would cut the lead to 3-2 off a long slap shot from the high point with 6:32 left in the third period. Jeremie Blain dropped the puck to Mike Vernace who teed up a shot that flew into the upper-right corner of the Gladiators net. The Brampton alternate captain tallied his third goal of the season while Blain was credited with his 22nd assist of the year. Steven Kaunisto picked up his 10th total point on the secondary helper.Buzzeo completed the hat-trick on an empty-net goal with 35 seconds left in the game. The forward completed the first Gladiators hat-trick since January 24, 2015 accomplished by Casey Pierro-Zabotel. Shawn Bates raced down the ice on a 2-on-1 opportunity, passing to the streaking Buzzeo for the goal. Bates records his first assist as a Gladiator on Buzzeo's eighth goal of the season.

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