by Graham Kendrick
December 31, 2013, Portland (ISN) – The Portland Winterhawks (25-9-2-2) fell 9-3 against the visiting Kelowna Rockets (31-3-0-2) Tuesday at the Moda Center.
Kelowna took a 3-0 lead in the first period on goals from Carter Rigby, Myles Bell and a power play marker from Justin Kirkland.
The Rockets made it 4-0 on a goal by Zach Franko 33 seconds into the second, then extended it to 5-0 on a goal by Rourke Chartier at the 3:13 mark, after which the Winterhawks replaced starting netminder Brendan Burke with Jarrod Schamerhorn.
The Hawks got on the board at the 5:25 mark of the second when a Rockets defenseman fanned on a point shot, and Alex Schoenborn picked up the loose puck, streaked down the ice and fired one past netminder Jordon Cooke to make it 5-1. They cut it to 5-2 at the 9:08 mark when Chase De Leo beat Cooke with a shot from the right faceoff circle for his 23rd goal of the season.
Late in the period the Rockets’ Madison Bowey scored a power play goal to give Kelowna a 6-2 lead heading into the third.
The Hawks got within three at the 2:27 mark of the third when De Leo scored on a 5-on-3 power play for his second of the night to make it 6-3, but the Rockets got that one back 1:29 later on a shorthanded goal by Damon Severson to take a 7-3 lead. The Rockets made it 8-3 at the 6:18 mark on Chartier’s second of the night, and added a late goal from Tyrell Goulbourne to make it 9-3.
Portland was again without Taylor Leier, Nic Petan and Derrick Pouliot who are representing Canada at the World Junior Championship and Brendan Leipsic, serving a suspension.
The Hawks and Rockets will meet again Thursday at Veterans Memorial Coliseum at 7 p.m.