SPOKANE, Wash. – The Spokane Chiefs bounced back from a 2-0 first period deficit in force on Friday night at Spokane Arena, defeating the Central Division-leading Medicine Hat Tigers, 5-3. Second-year forward Jaret Anderson-Dolan led the way with his third hat trick of the year.
The Tigers jumped out to their early lead with back-to-back goals late in the first period. Former first round WHL Bantam Draft selection James Hamblin scored his 14th of the season at the 15:53 mark off assists from Chad Butcher and Kristians Rubins. Montreal Canadiens prospect Matthew Bradley earned his 23rd of the season at the 18:46 mark of the period with a powerful drive to the net from the left wing.
Down 2-0 to start the second, the Chiefs turned it on. Winnipeg native Hayden Ostir broke through with his fifth of the season on a sharp angle from the left wing, squeaking the puck past Medicine Hat netminder Michael Bullion at the 2:25 mark.
Anderson-Dolan scored his first of three power play goals just over six minutes later, tapping in a beautiful cross-crease feed from Riley Woods for his 25th of the season.
The draft-eligible forward from Calgary picked up his second of the night to give the Chiefs their first lead, slamming home a rebound at the 12:34 mark of the middle frame. Woods and Keanu Yamamoto earned assists after Kailer Yamamoto extended the offensive chance earlier in the shift, denying a Tigers breakout pass to keep the puck in the zone.
The Tigers bounced back to tie it at 3-3 early in the third period as 1999-born forward Tyler Preziuso took advantage of a breakdown in front of Chiefs goalie Dawson Weatherill to slide in just his third goal of the season.
Anderson-Dolan would not be denied, sending the hats flying at the 11:52 mark, picking the top-left corner from the left wing after a perfect feed from Kailer Yamamoto to make it 4-3 in favor of the Chiefs.
The Spokane Arena crowd of 8,564 was finally able to exhale after Keanu Yamamoto slid in his 19th of the season with 1:15 left in regulation as Bullion got caught trying to get off the ice to give Medicine Hat an extra attacker. Anderson-Dolan and rookie defenseman Ty Smith earned assists on the play.
Weatherill finished the game with 31 saves on 34 shots faced, including 12-of-13 in the third period, while Bullion made 29 saves on the same number of shots. The Chiefs were 3-for-7 on the power play and 3-for-4 on the penalty kill.
The Chiefs remain home on Saturday to host the Kamloops Blazers on Coca-Cola Replica Locker Giveaway Night at Spokane Arena. The first 2,000 fans and all full season ticket holders will receive a miniature replica Spokane Chiefs locker courtesy of Coca-Cola. Saturday’s game will also be broadcast live on television on SWX, available on Comcast channel 112 and over-the-air channel 6.2.
Tickets for Saturday night and all Chiefs home games area available in-person at the Chiefs’ Ticket Office, over the phone at 509-535-PUCK and online at ticketswest.com or spokanechiefs.com.