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Winterhawks Game Day Preview: Portland at Vancouver – Game #11

Chad Baker

After stunning the Giants in downtown Portland last night, the Winterhawks trek north to finish the weekend series in British Columbia against the Giants.

Puck Drop: 7:00 p.m.

Venue: Langley Events Centre

Listen: winterhawks.com/listen

Watch: WHL Live

PREVIOUS GAME – Winterhawks 5 vs Giants 3: Portland scored four unanswered goals at the Moda Center to earn their third home win of the season and break the Giants eight-game point streak.

It was an up-tempo first period that resulted in two power play goals. The Winterhawks faithful of 5,568 made their presence shown from the opening puck drop and the Hawks rewarded them with a pair of prime scoring chances in tight just minutes into the game.

Portland’s first goal came at the 13:22 mark on the man advantage. Forward Jake Gricius tipped in a Joachim Blichfeld snapshot to give the Hawks the first lead of the night. Vancouver’s leading scorer James Malm wasted little time getting on the score sheet. He found the equalizer with under a minute to play in the frame.

There was no shortage of offense in the second frame. The Giants scored two quick ones thanks to rookie Justin Sourdif and Bowen Byram to jump out to a 3-1 lead. Portland would not go away quietly. Just shy of the midway point of regulation, Gricius buries his second power play goal of the night with a nifty outside in move at the top of the crease.

The rest of the game belonged to the Hawks. After the media timeout in the third period, Ryan Hughes set up a rink-wide feed to Cody Glass who scored on a sharp angle one-timer to tie the game at three apiece. Glass stretched his point streak to eight straight games with a two point performance. A minute and ten seconds later, Reece Newkirk drilled in his seventh of the season to complete the comeback effort. Ryan Hughes tacked on an empty net goal to seal the 5-3 win.

TODAY’S OPPONENT:

Vancouver lost just their second game in regulation last night after squandering a 3-1 lead early in the second period. The good news for the Giants is they will play the next eight games on home ice.

The loss to the Winterhawks comes just days after a dominating performance in which Vancouver out shot their opponent 71-16. Last night, the team generated just 25 shots and could not get into an offensive rhythm in the third period. Shane Farkas turned aside the last 14 shots he faced in the night.

James Malm scored his third power play goal of the season last night and rookie Justin Sourdif added his third of the year. Sourdif was chosen by Hockey Canada to represent his country at the World Under-17 Challenge next month. He’ll be competing with Hawks forward Seth Jarvis in a maple leaf jersey.

Bowen Byram joined the rush and scored his fifth goal of the season at the Moda Center. He’s now tied for second among WHL defensemen in goal scoring.

Saturday night’s trip to the Langley Events Centre will be the first of two trips to the Vancouver suburb. The next visit is on Martin Luther King day for an afternoon affair.

The next home games will be on Saturday, October 27th and Sunday, October 28th against the Kamloops Blazers. Individual tickets are now on sale. Be sure to visit winterhawks.com/tickets for full details on pricing and availability.

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