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Three Takeaways: September 16 Preseason Game vs. Spokane

September 16, 2022 - Western Hockey League (WHL) - Portland Winterhawks News Release


Kennewick, Wash. - Following the Winterhawks' fourth preseason contest, defenseman Luca Cagnoni now sits atop the Western Hockey League leaderboard with six points in three games.

The Winterhawks and Chiefs battled in the preseason for the second straight day, with Spokane claiming a 10-4 victory on Friday afternoon.

Let's get to the takeaways before we close the book on preseason play Saturday night.

OFFENSIVE EXPLOSION

*Shrugs* We would have all won a free Jumbo Jack if this were a home game!

After scoring three goals in 65 minutes of play yesterday, Portland matched that total in under 12 minutes today. Sixteen-year-old winger Cole Cairns potted his first preseason goal on the game's opening shot to give Portland the early lead.

Luca Cagnoni, Kyle Chyzowski, and Josh Zakreski provided the other three Winterhawks tallies and Cagnoni recorded a three-point afternoon (G-2A) to give him the WHL lead in points with six.

BATTLE TESTED

It's no easy task to play the same team twice in a 24-hour window. Spokane and the rest of the U.S. Division look far more competitive than a season ago, and with seven 2022-23 Winterhawks attending NHL rookie camps and a lineup that continues to evolve, it's fair to expect more fluid play throughout the preseason.

Portland's travels over the past two weeks will benefit them as the regular season gets underway. The Hawks will hope to lock in a solid road strategy in their preseason closer tomorrow ahead of two tough regular-season contests in Kamloops and Kelowna next week.

SHAKE IT OFF

No matter the individual game results, it's important to remember - every record resets on Monday. Mike Johnston mentioned on Thursday he wants his team to get used to winning to give them momentum, but the primary goal of just shaking off the rust remains.

"Wins are still important in the preseason," head coach Mike Johnston said after last night's game, "Although we still have quite a few 16-year-olds in our lineup, it's a great experience for them."

The Winterhawks wrap up preseason play tomorrow evening against the Tri-City Americans, their first three-games-in-three-days stretch of the season.

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The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.

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