Winterhawks Game Day Preview: Portland at Everett - Game #54
The gap is down to two and a half games separating Portland and Everett at the top of the U.S. Division and Saturday night represents their second to last meeting of the regular season.
Puck Drop: 7:05 p.m.
Venue: Angel of the Winds Arena
Watch: WHL Live
PREVIOUS GAME - Winterhawks 4 at Seattle 1: In the snowy atmosphere of Seattle, the Winterhawks beat the Thunderbirds 4-1 to earn their fifth straight win in the I-5 rivalry.
For the second time this week, the Winterhawks jumped out to an early road lead, come to find out they would not relinquish it. The Winterhawks did not allow Seattle to score an even strength goal (their lone goal came late in the third period on a 5-on-3 power play) in back-to-back meetings.
Nine different players recorded a point for the Hawks with defenseman Johnny Ludvig leading the way with his first multi-point game in his WHL career (1G-1A). Seth Jarvis and Brendan De Jong each had two assists.
Shane Farkas improves to 9-1-0 against the Seattle Thunderbirds in his career, stopping 25 shots tonight.
Portland has five straight wins against Seattle dating back to November 17, 2018.
The Hawks only allowed one goal tonight, which is their best defensive performance against Seattle all season.
Joachim Blichfeld scored the first of the night to give him 44 goals in 53 games.
John Ludvig now has three points in his last three games and his +36 rating continues to lead all Western Conference players.
With a two assist performance, Seth Jarvis becomes the 8th WHL rookie to surpass 30 points this year. TODAY'S MATCH-UP:
Everett's four game-winning streak came to a close on Friday night when the lost 1-0 at home to the Medicine Hat Tigers. Mads Sogaard stopped 41 shots in the shutout victory, while Dustin Wolf turned aside 27 of 28.
The Hawks pummeled the Silvertips in their last meeting in Portland, beating them 5-1 thanks to Joel Hofer making 33 saves and keeping Everett off the scoreboard until the 59:45 mark of the game. With those few exceptions aside, Everett's offense has been very sound. Zack Andrusiak is just two weeks removed from a hat trick performance against Lethbridge and he has 12 goals this year alone against Portland.
Andrusiak started the string of three straight hat trick performances from January 26 - February 2. Bryce Kindopp recorded the next one (3-0-3) and Connor Dewar (3-3-6) came to life against Seattle. Kindopp has ten points (6-4-10) in his last four games and 70-point man Connor Dewar has 11 points (4-7-11) in that same stretch of games.
Special teams play has benefited the 'Tips lately. In their last five games, they are 10-for-27 on the power play (37%) and 14 of 16 on the penalty kill (88%). Following tonight's game, the Silvertips have a grueling stretch with five games in seven nights, including trips to Kelowna and Prince George. This is the last meeting of the regular season in Everett. The Hawks and Silvertips' ten game series wraps up in Portland on March 12.
The Hawks return home on Sunday, February 10 for a game against the Medicine Hat Tigers at 5:00 p.m. inside the Moda Center. It's also the first annual Hockey Challenge Day presented by Budweiser. The event is dedicated to raising money for the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Oregon and Southwest Washington. Learn more about the event at winterhawks.com/hockeychallenge and be sure to visit winterhawks.com/tickets for full details on pricing and availability for Sunday's game.
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