The Portland Winterhawks dropped a 2-1 heartbreaker to the Kelowna Rockets in overtime Friday in Game 5 of the Western Conference Final.
Kelowna’s Tyson Baillie scored at 14:55 in the extra frame to give the Rockets a 3-2 series lead. Game 6 will be Sunday at 5 p.m. at the Moda Center.
Winterhawks captain Nic Petan tied a WHL record by playing in his 87th career playoff game Friday. He joins Shay Stevenson atop the record book, with Stevenson having set the record with the Red Deer Rebels from 2000-2004.
The Hawks outshot Kelowna 16-8 in the first period, but it was the Rockets who registered the lone goal of the frame when Riley Stadel scored at the 17:35 mark for a 1-0 lead Kelowna took into the second period.
Portland applied pressure throughout the second looking for the equalizer, but Rockets goaltender Jackson Whistle turned them away each time as Kelowna maintained their 1-0 lead into the third period.
It remained 1-0 until 3:33 remained in the third, when Petan finally beat Whistle through the five-hole to even the game at 1-1, setting up overtime. With his goal, Petan extended his point streak to 16 games, with at least one point in each game thus far in the postseason. The 16-game game point streak ties the Winterhawks’ playoff record, set last year by Brendan Leipsic.
Winterhawks netminder Adin Hill was tremendous in the extra frame, with numerous highlight-reel saves. However, on Kelowna’s 20th shot of the period Baillie was able to find the back of the net to give the Rockets the victory.
Hill finished with 47 saves on 49 shots, including 19 saves in the overtime period. Whistle finished with 42 saves on 43 Portland shots.