SPOKANE, Wash. — The Spokane Chiefs claimed their first victory of the 2019 WHL Western Conference Championship series versus the Vancouver Giants on Tuesday night, coming away with the 3-2 overtime victory. Jake McGrew scored the game-winner 8:51 into the extra frame.
After a scoreless first period, the Chiefs pulled ahead 1-0 on an Eli Zummack second-period goal at 17:40 when he corralled the rebound off a Nolan Reid shot and flipped it home for the period’s only goal.
Vancouver’s Justin Sourdif evened the score at 1-1 with a goal early in the third period, but Spokane’s Luke Toporowski answered at 10:51 to put the Chiefs back ahead as the clock wound down. Riley Woods streaked down the left side before finding Toporowski in front, who chipped it up and over goaltender David Tendeck’s left shoulder.
A hooking penalty with just under five minutes remaining in regulation opened the door for a Vancouver power play goal at 17:01, scored by Jared Dmytriw to tie the game and force overtime.
After minutes of Giants control, it was San Jose Sharks prospect McGrew who came through with the decisive goal for the Chiefs at 8:51. Defenseman Bobby Russell pinched down the right wall, carrying the puck behind the Vancouver goal. Russell fed the puck in front where McGrew was waiting to slam it home for his second of the playoffs.
The win marked Spokane’s third overtime victory of the postseason. They beat Portland twice in extra time during the first round. Vancouver dropped to 2-1.
Spokane goaltender Bailey Brkin was his typically dependable self between the pipes, finishing the night 27-for-29 while Tendeck – the reigning CHL Goaltender of the Week – went 35-for-38. The Chiefs were 0-for-2 on the power play and 1-for-2 on the penalty kill.
The result guarantees that the two teams will head back to Langley, B.C. for Game 5 of the Western Conference Championship this Friday, April 26. Game 4 of the series will take place at Spokane Arena on Wednesday night as the Chiefs will look to even the series, currently trailing 2-1.
The 2019 WHL Western Conference Championship continues on Wednesday, April 24 at Spokane Arena. Tickets for are available online, over the phone at 509-535-PUCK and in-person at the Chiefs’ Ticket Office.