Several Portland Winterhawks Booster Club members took part in the 82nd Avenue Parade of Rose, which started near Eastport Plaza to Yamhill and 79th Avenue. Malcolm and Kathie Freud led the charge with the banner, who have been season ticket holders of the Winterhawks since 1976.
The first two games are in the books, and the “Comeback Kids” look like they’ll have to do it again.
Winnipeg Ice used their rest to their advantage as they took a pair of games at the ICE cave this weekend.
They first took out Saskatoon 3-0, where the teams went scoreless in the third period, but by then, the damage was done.
Ben Zloty opened things up with a backhand shot through traffic and fooling Ethan Chadwick in the Blades net. Zack Ostapchuck made it 2-0 with a penalty shot goal two minutes later. Zack’ss goal came as the ICE were shorthanded as well.
In the third period. Carson Lambos floated a shot on goal, making it past Chadwick in the middle of the second.
Winnipeg took many shots on goal, which Chadwick thwarted, but the Blades couldn’t respond.
Winnipeg thought they had scored a fourth to the empty net. However, it was ruled offside, so the ICE settled for a 3-0 win. Shots favored the ICE 28-16, and neither team was successful on the powerplay 0-4 for the Blades and 0-1 for the ICE.
The following day the two faced each other again.
The ICE saw Connor McClennon bag his first two of the night as the ICE opened up a 2-0 lead in the first period. McClennon’s second goal was in the powerplay. Zach Benson and Owen Pederson added markers in the second for the ICE and went up 4-0 at the end of two.
McClennon pocketed his third of the night early in the third before Saskatoon got on the board. Justin Lies and Jayden Weins on the powerplay rallied for the Blades but saw Matthew Savoie snuff things out with an empty net goal. The shots favored the ICE 33-29 and Saw the Blades 1-5 versus Winnipeg’s 1-3 on the powerplay. Game three will be Tuesday night in Saskatoon.
Game one took place in the Accesso ShoWare Center between two teams who had yet to lose in the playoffs this year. Each team at 8-0 was seeing it all on the line with games this weekend. At stake was the representation of the Western Division for the WHL in the final. Kamloops was already assured of a spot in the Memorial Cup, but after loading up at the trade deadline, they wanted not to be a lame-duck entry in the Cup Final. Seattle, too, had “loaded up” as they made a venture back to the battle again after losing the WHL Final last year to the Edmonton Oil Kings, who were far and away, decimated following the Memorial Cup, where they not only didn’t win any of the games but won just ten games this season. The same fate may await teams in the battle now.
Kamloops and Seattle battled to determine who would draw “first blood,” a blemish on the perfect records throughout the playoffs thus far. Goaltender Thomas Milic snuffed out several near chances for Kamloops. At the other end, Dylan Ernst kept his team in the thick of things with critical stops of his own.
Seattle got on the board after a solid stop by Ernst, saw the rebound go behind the net, and bounce out to Jared Davidson, who fired into the open part of the net with three minutes remaining in the first period.
The second period saw Seattle go up by a pair as a result of a 2 on 1, initially started by Jordan Gustafonand finished by Nico Myatovic.
Late in the second period, Kamloops closed the gap with an Olen Zellweger five-hole blast.
In the third, Seattle thought they scored early but was ruled no goal due to contact with the goaltender. Midway through the period, Dylan Guenther wrapped the puck around Ernst to put Seattle up by a pair. Jared Hanzel found Jared Davidson near the Kamloops line, and he walked in, roofing the puck over Ernst and a 4-1 lead. Gracyn Sawchyn capped off the scoring on the powerplay after cleaning up the garbage in front to put the puck left post. Seattle outshot Kamloops 35-25 and went 1-3 on the powerplay to Kamloops 0-2.
Game 2 was started earlier to not coincide with the Seattle Kraken game seven at Climate Pledge Arena.,
With just 40 seconds to go in the period, Caeden Bankler scored for the Blazers to give them a 1-0 lead after 20 minutes.
Less than a minute into the second, Olen Zellweger scored on the powerplay. Seattle got on the board on a powerplay of their own with Luca Ciona seven minutes later. Five minutes after that, Kamloops restored their two-goal lead with Matthew Seminoff also on the powerplay for the Blazers.
Seattle’s Colton Dach added one in the second period to bring the Thunderbirds within one. Just over two minutes into the third, Brad Lambert tied the game for Seattle and remained that way through the rest of the period. Jeremy Hanzel was the game’s hero, scoring six minutes into overtime to complete Seattle’s comeback at 4-3. Shots favored Kamloops 42-39 in a losing cause, with Blazers 2 for 5 and Seattle 1 for 5 on the powerplay.
Both Seattle and Winnipeg hold 2-0 leads in the series, with games headed back to Kamloops and Saskatoon this coming week.