It's a Guelph Storm losing streak that has still had some solid efforts and tough losses. But Friday's fifth defeat in a row was not one of them.
A tepid first period anchored by a listless power play that reminds fans nightly how important the injured Michael Buchinger was to this team saw Guelph luckily trailing by only one goal to the Brantford Bulldogs after 20 minutes.
But a terrible second period blew the game open, as Brantford scored four unanswered goals to lead 5-0 after 40 minutes.
A spirited 10 minutes to open the third saw it become a 5-2 game that could have been 5-3 had Max Namestnikov sunk a penalty shot. But at the end of the day the scoreboard had it 6-4 Bulldogs, a score that was a little too complimentary to the locals.
The loss, combined with a loss in overtime by the Owen Sound Attack, has the Attack and Storm now in a tie for fifth in the Western Conference.
"We got off to a decent start ... but in the second period we just weren't focused and weren't ready to dial it in on the power play," said Storm captain Braeden Bowman, referring to a power play that went 0-for-5 on the night.
"They played hard and we didn't really have an answer for them ... we really didn't play our best. We weren't focused in that second period and the third period is what it was, but it doesn't matter when you play that bad in the second.
"We all have the same goal in there (the dressing room): just keep positive and have a good attitude no matter what the outcomes are."
Max Namestnikov, Jett Luchanko, Vilmer Alriksson and Hunter McKenzie had the Storm goals, the last one coming with four seconds left in the game.
Brayden Gillespie, for so long the glue that held the Storm together, had a sub-par night, allowing five goals on 19 shots before being yanked midway through the second period.
Storm coach Chad Wiseman didn't mind his team's first period, but felt the consistency just wasn't there overall.
"We just didn't play well for 60 minutes," he said. "I didn't mind our first period, but a sloppy second, some penalties and a lack of execution on the power play resulted in a momentum swing.
"Obviously we came out swinging in the third, we threw everything at them, but that's easy when you play desperate hockey. Those 28 or 29 minutes today is just not enough to win a 60-minute hockey game."
Wiseman declined to commit to giving Damian Slavik a run of starts in net.
"He'll start (Saturday) in Sarnia and we'll go from there," Wiseman said.
Guelph is in a busy stretch that sees them play six games in 11 days.They play in Sarnia Saturday night. They're in Kitchener Tuesday, in Peterborough Thursday then return home for a Friday game against Erie.