Playing their first-ever game on Vancouver Island Tuesday night, the Everett Silvertips built a two-goal lead and turned it into a 3-2 victory over the Victoria Royals at Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre. The victory pulls Everett to within three points of a playoff spot and five points of the seventh-place Royals in the WHL’s Western Conference standings.
Cody Fowlie and Ryan Harrison each finished with a goal and an assist in the win, while Dominik Bittner added the other Everett tally. Vancouver Island native Josh Caron (Campbell River, BC) chipped in his third assist in the past two games in his first outing as an Alternate Captain, and forward Carson Stadnyk also made his WHL debut for the ‘Tips on his 17th birthday.
The Silvertips jumped out to an 8-0 shot advantage in the first 12 minutes of the contest and then grabbed the game’s first goal. Ryan Harrison and Kohl Bauml teamed up down low to get the puck in front to Cody Fowlie, who jammed home his own rebound to give Everett a 1-0 lead at the 13:48 mark. The ‘Tips killed off two Victoria powerplays in the first and went to the locker room on top by a goal.
A charging major to Royals defender Tyler Stahl put the Silvertips on a five-minute powerplay in the second period, but they couldn’t add to the lead until late in the frame. With just 1:27 remaining, Dominik Bittner moved in from the right point and wristed a shot through traffic past Keith Hamilton to put the ‘Tips ahead 2-0 through two.
After the Silvertips had killed off nearly four full minutes of Victoria powerplay time to start the third stanza, Ben Walker got the Royals on the board with a rebound goal following an Everett turnover. The Silvertips were being outshot 12-0 midway through the period before scoring on their first shot to regain the two-goal edge. Fowlie rushed the puck up the left boards and dished it in front to Ryan Harrison, who out-muscled a defender before firing a shot inside the left post to make it 3-1 for the ‘Tips. Victoria again cut into the lead with the net empty in the final minute on a powerplay goal from Brandon Magee, but the Silvertips didn’t allow them a chance to tie in the closing seconds of a 3-2 win.
Kent Simpson (11-24-1-5) stopped 29 shots to earn his third consecutive victory in goal, while Keith Hamilton (16-27-1-0) totaled 22 saves in defeat. Victoria outshot Everett 31-25 for the night and scored on 1 of 6 powerplay chances. The Silvertips were 0 for 3 with the man-advantage.
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The teams will now meet again Wednesday night at 7:05 pm in the second game of their back-to-back set as the ‘Tips look to sweep both games on the Island. Everett will then return to the mainland to start a home-and-home set with Vancouver on Friday before returning to Comcast Arena to face the Giants at home Saturday at 7:05 pm.
Silvertips group tickets and flex ticket packages can be purchased in person at the team office inside at Comcast Arena or by phone at 425-252-5100. Single game tickets are on sale by phone (866-332-8499), online ( www.comcastarenaeverett.com ) or at the Comcast Arena box office.