Winterhawks Earn Five of Possible Six Points After Beating Kamloops 5-2 on Sunday
Portland, Ore. - Aidan Litke (lit-KEY) scored twice and Taylor Gauthier (GO-chee-yay) made 25 saves as the Winterhawks rattled off five consecutive goals to knock off the Kamloops Blazers 5-2 at the VMC on Sunday.
Kamloops opened the scoring just past the midway point of the first period when Daylan Kuefler (KEEF-ler) poked a loose puck past Gauthier for his 16th marker of the year. The Blazers doubled their advantage four minutes later as Logan Stankoven (STANK-cove-in) collected a Caedan Bankier pass and tallied his 17th of the season past the outstretched arms of Gauthier.
The second period, however, belonged to Portland, as the Hawks rattled off three unanswered goals to take a 3-2 lead. Litke put the hosts on the board 7:47 into the frame as he tapped home a spin around pass from Dawson Pasternak for his ninth of the season and first of the night. Luca Cagnoni (can-YO-knee) then found twine for a second straight game off a slick feed from Jaydon Dureau (dur-ROW) behind the net to knot the affair at two. Just over a minute later, Portland captain Clay Hanus (HAW-niss) gave his team its first lead of the evening with his eighth goal of the season, winding across the top of the faceoff circles before unleashing a lethal wrister under the glove of Kamloops' Dylan Garand. Hanus' goal was the eventual game-winner.
Portland's dominance continued into the third as Gauthier shut down every Kamloops chance and Litke notched his second of the game to seal the win. Litke, Pasternak and Jack O'Brien beautifully worked a 3-on-1 passing play to make it 4-2 Hawks 13 minutes into the final frame, then James Stefan posted an empty-net marker to close things out.
Gauthier is now 3-0-0-0 since joining the Winterhawks, and picked up his first home victory tonight. Portland next travels to Tri-City on Friday, Jan. 21 before hosting the Seattle Thunderbirds and Spokane Chiefs on Saturday and Sunday.
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Western Hockey League Stories from January 17, 2022
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