Winterhawks Defeat Giants 5-1

November 11, 2023 - Western Hockey League (WHL) - Vancouver Giants News Release

Vancouver Giants battle the Portland Winterhawks
Vancouver Giants battle the Portland Winterhawks
(Vancouver Giants, Credit: Rob Wilton)

Langley, B.C. - The Vancouver Giants lost 5-1 to the Portland Winterhawks on Friday night at the Langley Events Centre.

The Giants's record is now 7-9-1 this season.

Scoring the lone goal for Vancouver was Kyren Gronick, his fourth of the season.

The Winterhawks, who are now 12-4-0-1 this season, led 2-0 after 20 minutes and 4-0 after 40 minutes, getting two goals each from 20-year-olds Gabe Klassen and James Stefan, as well as a goal from Josh Zakreski.

None of Portland's five goals came at 5-on-5: two were power play markers, two were scored shorthanded and one was potted during 4-on-4 play.


The Winterhawks opened the scoring on their second power play of the period at the 11:21 mark. Josh Davies fed a pass from the bottom of the circle to the high slot to Klassen, who quickly fired a wrist shot to the top corner.

Vancouver got their first power play opportunity near the end of the first period, but found themselves tired at the end of a long shift and surrendered a shorthanded goal, as Stefan scored his 10th of the season to give Portland a 2-0 lead heading into the first intermission.

Midway through the second, Zakreski scored on the power play off a backhand shot to give Portland a 3-0 advantage.

With under two minutes to go in the second, the Winterhawks converted right off an offensive zone face-off during 4-on-4 play, as Ryder Thompson spotted Klassen just outside the crease for an easy tap-in to make it 4-0 after 40 minutes of play.

Just 47 seconds into the third period, Klassen would find Stefan shorthanded yet again for his second goal of the game, increasing the visitor's lead to 5-0.

Vancouver did get on the board at the 7:42 mark of the third period off an odd-man rush, after Aaron Obobaifo out-waited the defender before feeding a pass to Gronick in the middle of the ice, who ripped it home on the glove side for his fourth goal of the season.


"Give Portland credit. They're such a good hockey team. We had a game plan. We thought we had a plan for us to put in place as far as being able to nullify that, but you can't take penalties like we did to start off the game. We got behind the eight ball and then we're trying to play catch up against a team like that. I thought we had some good chances to get back into the game and then to give up that shorthanded goal was kind of a back breaker. And we were fully aware of when they're on the ice on the penalty kill, they're that explosive and they can make something out of nothing and that's what they did here. It's a humbling loss this evening. We're not Portland. Like I said before we played these guys, that's one of the best teams in the country." - Head Coach Manny Viveiros


SOG: VAN - 5/5/13 = 23 | POR - 13/21/13 = 47

PP: VAN - 0/5 | POR - 2/4

Face-Offs: VAN - 39 | POR - 31


1st: POR - Gabe Klassen - 2G, 2A, 4 SOG

2nd: POR - James Stefan - 2G, 11 SOG

3rd: VAN - Brett Mirwald - 42 Saves on 47 Shots


Vancouver: Loss - Brett Mirwald (42 saves / 47 shots)

Portland: Win - Jan Spunar (22 saves / 23 shots)


Vancouver wraps up their week tomorrow (Saturday) when they head to Everett to battle the Silvertips for the first time this season.

Images from this story

Vancouver Giants battle the Portland Winterhawks
Vancouver Giants battle the Portland Winterhawks

(Rob Wilton)

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