SPOKANE, Wash. — The Spokane Chiefs cruised to a 9-2 win over the Prince George Cougars Friday night, thanks in no small part to a franchise record seven-point effort from defenseman Ty Smith.
Smith, a 2018 NHL Entry Draft top prospect who was the first overall pick in the 2015 WHL Bantam Draft, piled up two goals and five assists, breaking a 32-year-old record. Teammates Mike Berger and Keith Van Rooyan each picked up six points for the Chiefs exactly a month apart (Oct. 11 and Nov. 11) back in 1986.
The Lloydminster, Alberta product now has 65 points on the season, which ties him with 1991 Memorial Cup team captain and former assistant coach Jon Klemm for seventh in Chiefs history for points by a defenseman in a single season. He is just the sixth Spokane blueliner to achieve the 65-point mark, joining Brenden Kichton (three times), Bryan McCabe, Berger, Sean Gillam and Klemm.
On Friday night, Chiefs Kailer Yamamoto and Milos Fafrak scored twice within 60 seconds early in the first period and never looked back, scoring the game’s first six goals.
Smith’s first goal – the Chiefs’ third – came just 12 seconds into the second period and proved to be the game-winner. His second came under four minutes later to push the Spokane lead to 4-0, with the secondary assist going to team captain Tyson Helgesen for his 100th career point.
Luke Toporowski scored his ninth of the season at 8:23 of the second, capitalizing on a breakaway sprung by a perfect stretch pass by no other than Ty Smith.
After Prince George’s first goal early in the third, the Chiefs scored three more goals to add an exclamation point, beginning with goals by Carter Chorney (2) and Ethan McIndoe (19) at the 5:58 and 6:30 marks, with Smith earning assists on both.
The record-breaking point came with 6:54 left in regulation as he assisted on Jeff Faith’s fifth score of the year. The goal was originally credited to Smith, but video review confirmed that his point shot was deflected by Faith in front, capping Spokane’s scoring.
Shots on goal were even on the night at 34 apiece, with Spokane going 0-for-1 on the power play and 2-for-2 on the penalty kill. Dawson Weatherill started in goal for the Chiefs and stopped 32 shots, while Tavin Grant played the first 40 minutes for Prince George (22 for 28) before being relieved by rookie Isaiah DiLaura (3 for 6).
The Chiefs are back at it tomorrow night, Saturday, February 24 against the Kootenay Ice. It will be Breast Cancer Awareness Night presented by Red Lion River Inn. The Chiefs will wear special pink-accented jerseys which will be auctioned off near the main entrance of the Arena. A portion of proceeds will benefit breast cancer awareness, prevention & support via Every Woman Can.
Tickets to all Chiefs home games can be purchased online, in-person at the Chiefs Ticket Office, or over the phone at 509-535-PUCK.