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Hofer Steals the Show in a Key Road Win

Keith Dwiggins

Joel Hofer continues his sensational month, turning aside 34 shots in 65 minutes and stopping all three shootout attempts to beat the Kamloops Blazers 2-1 in a Sandman Centre shootout on Friday night. With the win, Portland extends their winning streak to five-in-a-row.

It was a high-tempo first period of play and Portland had a better start against the B.C. Division’s best. In the 16th minute of the opening frame, Kade Nolan walked the blue line to evade the defense and he ripped a wrist shot off the crossbar and in to give the Hawks a 1-0 lead to take into the first intermission break.

The Winterhawks held that 1-0 lead for nearly 20 minutes until Connor Zary netted his team-leading 18th goal of the year while his Blazers were shorthanded. The 1-1 tie lasted into the third period at the Sandman Centre.

Kamloops out-shot Portland 17-to-11 in the final 25 minutes of the game, but Hofer made some momentum-changing stops to close out the game. In overtime, Seth Jarvis nearly won it on a second chance play from Jake Gricius, but NHL Draft prospect Dylan Garand made a highlight reel stop. Fast forwarding to the shootout round, it was only fitting that Jarvis netted the game-winning shootout goal to give the Hawks their 16th win of the season.

NOTABLES:

  • Joel Hofer saw his shutout streak end in the second period of tonight’s game at 99:23 consecutive minutes without allowing a goal. After stopping all three Kamloops shootout attempts, Hofer is now 12-for-15 on the season in the shootout round.
  • Portland handed the Blazers their first home loss since October 5, 2019.
  • Once again, the Hawks are in a tie with Everett for first place in the division.
  • All three meetings against the Blazers this season have been decided by one goal.
  • Both of Kade Nolan’s goals this season have come on the road.
  • The Hawks have now won five straight games and have earned at least one point in their last eight contests.
  • The Hawks face the Blazers tomorrow for the final meeting of the 2019-20 regular season. It’s also the Kamloops Blazers Teddy Bear Toss Night.

Box Score (Click the hyperlink to find all the scoring details)

SHOTS ON GOAL:

POR: 34
KAM: 35

POWER PLAY:

POR: 0/4
KAM: 0/4 with one shorthanded goal

SAVES:

POR: Joel Hofer stopped 34-of-35 shots and all three shootout attempts.
KAM: Dylan Garand stopped 33-of-34 shots and 1-of-2 shootout attempts.

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