Courtesy of the Portland Winterhawks
The Portland Winterhawks (57-12-1-2) wrapped up the regular season with a 6-1 win against the visiting Spokane Chiefs (44-26-2-0) Sunday in front of 9,230 fans.
With the victory, the Hawks set a new franchise record with their 57th win of the season, and finish with 117 points, also a franchise record.
Portland also finishes the season with the league’s top three scorers. Brendan Leipsic and Nic Petan, who did not play Sunday, share first place with 120 points each. Ty Rattie takes third place with 110 points. Leipsic also finishes first in the WHL in goals with 49, and Petan’s 74 assists are tops in that category.
The Hawks opened the scoring 4:57 into the game when Rattie banged in a rebound at the side of the net for a 1-0 lead. Portland struck again at the 16:23 mark when Paul Bittner took a feed on the doorstep and beat Spokane netminder Garret Hughson to take a 2-0 lead. Taylor Peters then scored a power play goal at the 18:04 mark to give the Hawks a 3-0 lead going into the second period.
Spokane got on the board 8:07 into the second on a goal by Markson Bechtold to cut Portland’s lead to 3-1. With 10.3 seconds to go in the period, Keegan Iverson snapped a shot from the left faceoff circle past Hughson to make it a 4-1 game going into the third.
Portland made it 5-1 early in the third when Chase De Leo scored a power play goal 1:36 into the frame, then rounded out the scoring with a power play goal from Oliver Bjorkstrand at the 18:03 mark.
Brendan Burke earned the win with 24 saves on 25 shots. Hughson took the loss for Spokane with six goals allowed on 39 shots.
Portland was 3-6 on the power play and a perfect 5-5 on the penalty kill.
Prior to the game the Hawks handed out their annual team awards. Leipsic and Petan shared both the Brian C. Shaw Trophy for team MVP and leading scorer awards. Oliver Bjorkstrand and Seth Jones shared the Rookie of the Year award, while the Bill Anderson Memorial Trophy for Sportsmanship & Ability went to Troy Rutkowski. Taylor Peters took home the Donald D. Ickes Award for the Booster Club’s Most Popular Player and the Robert R. Boss Memorial Best Defensive Player Award. Rutkowski also shared the Scholastic Player of the Year Award with Dominic Turgeon.
The Hawks open the playoffs against the Everett Silvertips in the first round, with Game 1 Friday at 7 p.m. in the Rose Garden.
Game 1: Friday, March 22 at the Rose Garden, 7 p.m.
Game 2: Saturday, March 23 at the Rose Garden, 7 p.m.
Game 3: Wednesday, March 27 at Everett, 7:05 p.m.
Game 4: Friday, March 29 at Everett, 7:35 p.m.
Game 5*: Saturday, March 30 at Veterans Memorial Coliseum, 7 p.m.
Game 6*: Monday, April 1 at Everett, 7:05 p.m.
Game 7*: Wednesday, April 3 at Veterans Memorial Coliseum, 7 p.m.
Tickets for Game 1 and Game 2 are available now at winterhawks.com.