Photo credit: John Allen, Arid Acres Photography
Kennewick, WA – On Friday night, the Americans won a thrilling game in overtime. But, their playoff fate was sealed three hours to the West.
Evan Sarthou stopped 27 shots and Brandon Carlo scored 2:32 into overtime, leading the Tri-City Americans (34-34-2-1, 71 pts) past the visiting Seattle Thunderbirds (43-23-4-0, 90 pts) 2-1 in front of 4,303 fans at the Toyota Center. However, with Spokane defeating Portland in overtime tonight, both teams earned a point, keeping the Americans out of the post-season for the first time since 2002-03. The Americans will wrap-up their regular season schedule tomorrow night at Toyota Center.
Both teams roared out of the gates, with multiple scoring opportunities for each team and a 23 combined shots on goal. With 2:46 left to play in the first period, though, the Americans would take a critical 1-0 lead behind Nolan Yaremko’s 7th goal of the season.
The lead would hold until 7:19 of the third period. While playing shorthanded, Scott Eansor broke free from the Tri-City defense and scored his 11th goal of the season, tying the game at 1. After a couple more close calls, the game would head to overtime.
Then, with 2:28 left in the extra session, Carlo registered his 4th goal of the season to send the Americans streaming off the bench in celebration. Sarthou picked up his second consecutive win, giving him 26 on the year. Meanwhile, Logan Flodell finished with 27 saves on 29 shots in the loss. Tri-City went 0-for-4 on the power play, while holding Seattle to 0-of-1 on the man-advantage.
The Americans will look to end the season on a high-note, by attempting to knock off the division rival Spokane Chiefs (33-29-5-4) one last time. Game time is 7:05pm at Toyota Center. The two teams have split the last four meetings, with Spokane holding a 7-4 edge in the 12-game season series.
Jack in the Box 3 Stars:
1. Brandon Carlo, Tri-City
2. Evan Sarthou, Tri-City
3. Logan Flodell, Seattle