The Portland Winterhawks used a 3 goal first period on their way to a 6-1 win over the Spokane Chiefs in the final game of the regular season. The loss snapped a 5 game winning streak for the Chiefs as they finished the season 44-26-2 for 90 points, good for 2nd place in the U.S. Division and 4th place in the Western Conference.
Portland jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first period as Ty Rattie, Paul Bittner and Taylor Peters scored for the Winterhawks. Peters added 2 assists for a 3 point first as Portland outshot Spokane 15-6 in the first. Spokane would pull within 3-1 when Markson Bechtold scored his 2nd goal of the season on a face-off win by Jacob Cardiff at 8:07 of the second period. The assist was Cardiff’s first WHL point. Spokane had a chance to draw closer but failed to score on a 6 minute power play chance. Portland then took a 4-1 lead after two on a Keegan Iverson goal with just 10 seconds left in the second.
In the third, Portland scored on a Chase DeLeo power play goal at 1:36 to take a 5-1 lead. Oliver Bjorkstrand’s power play goal would cap the scoring at 18:03 as Portland went 3-6 on the power play while the Chiefs were 0-5.
The Chiefs will now open the playoffs in games 1 and 2 of their first round series with the Tri City Americans at the Spokane Arena Friday and Saturday at 7:05pm. Mike Boyle will have the call on 1510 KGA beginning with the pre-game shows at 6:30pm.