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T-Birds Cut Magic Number To One With Win Over Americans

Brian Liesse

Strand, Andrusiak, Volcan and Wedman score in 4-3 win over Tri-City

KENT, March 6, 2018 — The Seattle Thunderbirds held off a furious rally from the Tri-City Americans in the last 1:36 of the third period Tuesday night at accesso ShoWare Center to secure a 4-3 win.

Hughes_Body_030618The Americans pulled goalie Patrick Dea for an extra attacker on a faceoff in the Seattle zone coming out of a timeout. Seattle goalie Liam Hughes made several very good saves as Tri-City kept the T-Birds hemmed in. Matthew Wedman and Nolan Volcan each blocked a shot as the T-Birds five skaters were not able to change for the last 1:36.

The T-Birds magic number to clinch at least the second wild card playoff spot is now one win. Seattle plays the Spokane Chiefs on Friday at 7:35pm at accesso ShoWare Center. If the T-Birds win they can do no worse than the second wild card spot. The Everett Silvertips are at accesso ShoWare Center at 7:05pm on Saturday.

The T-Birds have a 31-25-8-2 record which is good for 72 points. They are one point behind the Americans, who have a 32-24-8-1 record for 73 points, for the first wild card playoff spot. Tri-City has one game in hand on the T-Birds.

The Kamloops Blazers have a 29-33-1-4 record which is good for 63 points. They only have five games remaining this season and the best they can do is 73 points.

Seattle took a 1-0 lead at 5:19 of the first period. Jarret Tyszka took a shot coming down the right wing. Tyszka got his own rebound and curled into the right circle. Tyszka found Austin Strand at the right point. Strand fired a low wrist shot with traffic in front of Tri-City goalie Patrick Dea. Strand’s shot beat Dea low on the glove side.

Tri-City outshot Seattle 12-10 in the first period.

Andrusiak_Body_030618Zack Andrusiak made it 2-0 lead at 4:31 of the second period. The T-Birds were on the power play when a Tri-City clearing attempt hit Noah Philp in the skate and came right to Andrusiak all alone in the right circle. Andrusiak skated at Dea and went backhand, forehand, and then backhand as he lifted the over the goalie as he sprawled in the crease.

Volcan scored an unassisted goal at 9:15 of the second to put the T-Birds up 3-0. It was Volcan’s 30th goal of the season.

Seattle outshot Tri-City 16-8 in the second period and led 27-22 in shots after two periods.

The T-Birds took a 4-0 lead one minute into the third period on a power-play goal. Turner Ottenbreit took a slap shot from the left point that Wedman tipped past Dea for his 16th goal of the season. Reece Harsch had the second assist.

Tri-City cut the T-Birds lead in half with back-to-back power-play goals by Morgan Geekie at 5:25 and Michael Rasmussen at 6:19 of the third period.

Nolan Yaremko knocked a puck past Hughes in a scramble at 15:31 of the third to cut the T-Birds lead to one goal.

Tri-City outshot Seattle 21-6 in the third period and 43-33 in the game.

Dea made 29 saves on 33 shots and his record is now 17-14-7-0.

T-Birds single game tickets for the 2017-18 season are currently on sale online on the T-Birds website and at the accesso ShoWare Center box office.

SCORING SUMMARY

First period – 1, Seattle, Strand 21 (Tyszka, Volcan), 5:19. Penalties – Bench, Tri (too many men-served by Bjorklund), 7:07. Bench, Sea (too many men-served by Philp), 9:25.

Second period – 2, Seattle, Andrusiak 31 (Philp), 4:31 (pp). 3, Seattle, Volcan 30, 9:15. Penalties – Moilanen, Sea (roughing), :28. Rasmussen, Tri (double minor-slew footing), :33. Lee, Tri (interference), 2:25. Yaremko, Tri (slashing), 8:35. Wedman, Sea (high-sticking), 13:55. Rasmussen, Tri (embellishment, unsportsmanlike conduct), 14:41. Ottenbreit, Sea (cross checking), 14:41. Sawchuk, Tri (slashing), 16:14.

Third period – 4, Seattle, Wedman 16 (Ottenbreit, Harsch), 1:00 (pp). 5, Tri-City, Geekie 26 (Topping, Bean), 5:25 (pp). 6, Tri-City, Rasmussen 25 (Coghlan, Johnson), 6:19 (pp). 7, Tri-City, Yaremko 20 (Coghlan, Topping), 15:31. Penalties – Moilanen, Sea (elbowing), 3:36. Ottenbreit, Sea (slashing), 5:25. Bryks, Sea (roughing), 10:22. Gatenby, Tri (roughing), 10:22. Bouchard, Tri (roughing), 10:22. Johnson, Tri (slashing), 15:59.

Shots on goal – Seattle 10-17-6 33, Tri-City 12-10-21 43. Goalies – Seattle, Hughes 43 shots-40 saves (13-10-5-1); Tri-City, Dea 33-29 (17-14-7-0). Power plays – Seattle 2-7; Tri-City 2-5. A – 4,353. Referees – Jeff Ingram, Dexter Rasmussen. Linesmen – Adam Brastad, Mark Heier.

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