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Yamamoto’s Career Night Leads Spokane Past Kootenay, 5-3

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CRANBROOK, B.C. – Kailer Yamamoto continued his blazing pace and contributed on all five Spokane Chiefs goals for his first career five-point night on Friday as the Spokane Chiefs outlasted the Kootenay ICE, 5-3 in Cranbrook, B.C. Yamamoto now has 27 points (9G-18A) on his current 11-game point streak and moved into sole possession of fifth place in the franchise record books with 169 assists.

After an early goal by Kootenay’s Peyton Krebs, Yamamoto and linemate Jaret Anderson-Dolan – who had a four-point (1G-3A) night of his own – each assisted on defenseman Ty Smith’s 8th goal of the season to tie it at 1-1 with just over three minutes expired in regulation.

Kootenay once again took the lead at 2-1 with a power play goal scored by Martin Bodak, but the Chiefs stormed right back to tie it up, this time as Jake McGrew punched in his 13th of the season on a rebound.

Spokane took it’s first lead of the game on Yamamoto’s lone goal of the night, as Anderson-Dolan slipped a perfect pass through a seam from the left circle to find the wide open winger, who tapped it into the open net to make it 3-2 with eight minutes left in the second.

Kootenay would not go away without a fight as former Portland Winterhawk Colton Veloso picked up his 17th of the season late in the middle frame to send the game to the second intermission tied 3-3.

The Chiefs dominated the ICE in the third and final frame, controlling the puck and outshooting the hosts 8-3. Anderson-Dolan sniped in his 28th of the season from the top of the left circle at the 3:55 mark to make it 4-3. That power play goal proved to be the game-winner as the Chiefs added insurance late on an empty netter by rookie Luke Toporowski, with Yamamoto picking up his fourth assist of the evening. 

Spokane finished the game 2-for-5 on the power play and 2-for-3 on the penalty kill while doubling Kootenay in shots, 34-17. Dawson Weatherill made his fifth consecutive start in net for Spokane while former Chief Matt Berlin started for the ICE.

Notes: Anderson-Dolan’s four-point night was the fourth of his career and first this season. The Chiefs are now 2-0-2-0 through four games on their current seven-game road swing. They are 5-0-2-0 over their last seven games.

The Chiefs have a rare weekend off before continuing their season-long seven-game road swing in Kamloops on Wednesday, February 7. That game will be at 7 p.m. with Mike Boyle on the radio call on 1510 KGA NW Sports Talk, beginning with the pre-game show at 6:30.

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