Sept 7,2014(ISN) – Kennewick, WA- The Tri-City Americans put the cherry on top of the cake that was the 2014 Red Lion Hotels Preseason Tournament on Saturday night, earning a 5-1 win against the rival Spokane Chiefs at the Toyota Center.
Tri-City came out and set the pace in the first period, outshooting Spokane 11-8 in the first. Tri-City got on the board midway through the period, as Brian Williams found Parker Bowles on the left side of the net, firing a shot that found its way pass Garret Hughson and into the goal to give the Americans a 1-0 lead after one period.
Spokane came out and tied the game early in the second period as Blair Oneschuk found the back of the net to even the score. But Tri-City turned it on after that, starting with a breakaway by Lucas Nickles, as he found a way to beat Hughson for a shorthanded goal to put the Americans ahead 2-1 five minutes into the second. Tri-City had two power play goals after that, the first coming at 12:18, as Beau McCue scored with a little help from Spokane goaltender Tyson Verhelst, deflecting it past the red line to increase the lead to 3-1. Tri-City’s lead became 4-1 after a rocket slapshot from Brandon Carlo at the blue line to give the Americans a 4-1 lead after two periods.
In the third period, Tri-City set the tempo with a 10-7 shot advantage and more physical play. The Americans put a stamp on the win with a goal late in the third period, as Justin Hamonic ripped a shot from the point and the puck deflecting off a Spokane stick and into the goal netting to cap off the 5-1 victory.
The Americans were excellent on the power play on this night, converting 3-of-5 opportunities while holding the Chiefs scoreless in five power play attempts.
Eric Comrie played fantastically in net for the Americans, making 22-of-23 saves in the win. Garret Hughson and Tyson Verhelst combined for 26 saves in the loss.
Tri-City will meet the Spokane Chiefs again this Thursday, Sept. 11, at Eastern Washington University in Cheney. Game time is at 7:05 p.m. The Americans will end the preseason next Saturday, Sept. 13, against the Spokane Chiefs at the Toyota Center, with the puck dropping at 7:05 p.m.
T.C.- Parker Bowles (Brian Williams, Vladislav Lukin), 12:46 (PP)
SPO- Blair Oneschuk (Curtis Miske, Jake Toporowski), 1:35
T.C.- Lucas Nickles (Justin Gutierrez, Parker Wotherspoon), 5:10 (SH)
T.C.- Beau McCue (Parker Wotherspoon, Ty Comrie), 12:18 (PP)
T.C.- Brandon Carlo (Josh Thrower, Ty Comrie), 15:10 (PP)
T.C.- Justin Hamonic (Semyon Krasheninnikov, Beau McCue), 14:46
SPO- Garret Hughson (31:27, 14/16), Tyson Verhelst (28:33, 12/15)
T.C.- Eric Comrie (60:00, 22/23)