When you outscore your opponents 18-3, chances are you'll win a seven game series in 4. The Portland Winterhawks did just that, setting and breaking yet more team and WHL records along the way. Now, they wait for just over a week before they play their first game for the Western Conference Championship. They will play the Kamloops Blazers who, similar to the Hawks, won their series in 4 straight by defeating the Kelowna Rockets.
In the record book, Mac Carruth ended the series with a 0.75 goals against average, besting former Hawks goalie Lanny Ramage who had a 1.13 GAA. Carruth also had 2 shutouts in a series which has never happened before and his save percentage also bests Lanny Ramage. Carruth already holds most of the other Winterhawks goaltending records in the playoffs and still appears to have a lot of life left in his last eligible year with the team.
With the Kamloops series now over, the Winterhawks announced the schedule for the Western Conference Championship with the winner to face off for the Ed Chynoweth Memorial WHL Championship.
Game 1 – Friday Apr 19 7:00pm Kamloops at Portland (Memorial Coliseum)
Game 2 – Saturday Apr 20 7:00pm Kamloops at Portland (Memorial Coliseum)
Game 3 – Tuesday Apr 23 7:00pm Portland at Kamloops
Game 4 – Wednesday Apr 24 7:00pm Portland at Kamloops
Game 5 – Friday Apr 26 7:00pm Kamloops at Portland*(Rose Garden)
Game 6 – Sunday Apr 28 6:00pm Portland at Kamloops *
Game 7 – Tuesday Apr 30 7:00pm Kamloops at Portland* (Rose Garden)
This will be the third straight trip to the Western Conference Finals for the Winterhawks and the first time in 17 years for the Blazers. Portland won the regular season series versus Kamloops and could be poised at their third attempt at the Chynoweth Cup. Tickets for the series are on sale now. There should be strong crowds for the first two games, despite the Trail Blazers playing in the Rose Garden, so parking at the Rose Quarter will be tough.