Shorthanded Chiefs Stumble in Season Opener
KENNEWICK, Wash. — The Spokane Chiefs, playing without a handful of projected key contributors away at NHL training camps, dropped their 2018-19 regular season opener on the road on Saturday night, 6-1 to the Tri-City Americans. Riley Woods scored the Chiefs’ only goal.
Woods put the Chiefs up 1-0 early in the first period, capitalizing on a power play chance for the team’s first goal of the season at the 2:20 mark. Defenseman Nolan Reid and forward Eli Zummack earned assists.
The Americans responded just under three minutes later as Roman Kalinichenko found the net, beating goaltender Dawson Weatherill on a screened shot inside the left post.
Kyle Olson gave Tri-City the lead with 4:53 left in the opening frame, capitalizing on a 2-on-1 opportunity to score his first of the season.
Tri-City continued to gain momentum in the second period as overage forward Nolan Yaremko – who earned assists on the Americans’ first two goals – scored two goals of his own, pushing Spokane’s deficit to three goals. Czech forward Krystof Hrabik scored his first career goal midway through the third to extend the Tri-City lead to 5-1, before Sasha Mutala capped the scoring late to reach the final score.
Spokane was without five key players in the lineup: RW Jake McGrew (San Jose), C Jaret Anderson-Dolan (Los Angeles), D Filip Kral (upper body injury), LW Luke Toporowski (prospects game) and D Ty Smith (New Jersey). Veteran forward Ethan McIndoe left the ice in the first period and did not return.
Weatherill started in goal and made 20 saves on 26 shots faced. Beck Warm started for the Americans and made 24 saves. Spokane finished 1-for-4 on the power play and 4-for-4 on the penalty kill.
The Chiefs remain on the road for their next game on Friday, September 28 at 6 p.m. PT. Mike Boyle will have the radio call on 1510 KGA beginning with the pre-game show 5:30 p.m.
Bud Light Opening Night & Pre-Game Party is Saturday, September 29 versus the Kootenay ICE! The party starts outside the main gates at 4 p.m. as we kick off the 2018-19 season with live music, food, drinks and activities. Meet the team as they “walk the red carpet” at 5 p.m.! Tickets are on sale now online via TicketsWest, over the phone at 509-535-PUCK and in-person at the Chiefs’ Ticket Office.
Ticket packages are also available! Save $$$ on tickets with great value options as low as $70! For more information or to purchase, visit the Chiefs’ Ticket Office at Spokane Arena, call 509-535-PUCK or click here.