Portland just keeps on its winning ways with yet another win in the strange five-game series with the Spokane Chiefs. The final game with the two teams is being held this weekend at the home of the Hawks.
The 4-2 score was indicative of the tightness of the game early on. The Hawks, though, could turn it on after that point.
After a tight-checking game up to the middle of the first frame, Kyle Chyzowski got out in front to put it past Cooper Michaluk, and the Hawks took the lead into the dressing room.
Just three and a half minutes into the second. Spokane tied it up with Raegan Wiles launched one just over Gauthier’s glove.
Marcus Nguyen tallied a short-handed marker to take a Clay Haus pass and shoot the puck through Michaluk’s pads nearly midway through the second period. That held up as the teams headed to the third.
Tyson Kozak added another to the total when he fired from near the blue line and over the shoulder of Michaluk. Clay Hanus got into the act when he made the Chiefs turnover the puck in the zone, and he fired right out in front to put the Hawks up 4-1
Spokane got one back as Jake Gudelj snuck one past Gauthier as he pushed Kyle Chykowski into the net, pushing it off the moorings, but not before scoring with 11 seconds left to end the game at 4-2.
The Hawks outshot the Chiefs 39-29, and neither team scored on the powerplay, with Portland one chance and Spokane four times.
The WHL started shuffling games as the season is being extended by two weeks owing to the QMJHL and their sabbatical in January. The Hawks had three games initially postponed due to COVID Protocols; two were on the BC Trip in January, and one US Division that came out of the Holiday break.
In addition, the WHL rescheduled one home game for the Winterhawks, from a midweek game to a weekend in April.
The following changes were made:
Hawks will travel to play the Vancouver Giants on Friday, April 8, and then head to play Kamloops on the 9th. The Hawks will then go to Kennewick with a weekday game against the Tri-City Americans.
The home game reset is against Everett. Instead of Wednesday, March 2 will now be a regular season-ending game on Friday, April 15.
Playoffs will then start on Friday, April 22, with the Memorial Cup slated to begin on June 20, with that ending as of June ends in St. John, New Brunswick, the home of the host St. John Seadogs.
The CHL Poll came out, and as though the Portland Winterhawks remain in the 5th seed. Atop the poll are the Winnipeg Ice and in third place Edmonton Oil Kings. Everett Silvertips are slotted 4th with the Kamloops Blazers. Two teams from the OHL in the Hamilton Bulldogs and Kingston Frontenacs are 7th and 8th, and two QMJHL teams round out the poll with Shawinigan Cataractes and Sherbrooke Phoenix. Honorable mentions go to Seattle Thunderbirds, Flint Freebirds, and Mississauga Steelheads as the poll hits the midway point of February.