Kennewick, WA- The Saskatoon Blades (16-25-3-0, 35 pts) scored three goals in the third period, but it wasn’t enough, as the Tri-City Americans (18-23-2-0, 38 pts) scored three goals in the second period and tallied one goal in the third to hold on for a 4-3 win in front of 3,603 fans at Toyota Center on Friday Night.
The two teams couldn’t find a rhythm in the first period, with Tri-City outshooting Saskatoon 14-4 in the period. Neither team could find a goal in the first, as the Americans had some momentum going into the second.
Tri-City started the second period shorthanded, but that didn’t stop the Americans from getting on the board first. A 2-on-1 chance was finished off by Jordan Topping for a 1-0 lead, followed 30 seconds later by Maxwell James shorthanded to make it 2-0. Parker Bowles exited the penalty box and received the puck, firing a shot into the back of the net for a 3-0 advantage 4:12 into the second. The Americans had an 11-7 shot advantage in the second and the three-goal lead going into the third.
Less than a minute into the third, Saskatoon got on the board, as Braylon Shmyr found twine to cut the lead to 3-1. But the lead was pushed back to three goals, as Topping scored his second of the night for a 4-1 advantage. The Blades wouldn’t go away, as Mason McCarty scored on a turnover to decrease the Tri-City advantage to 4-2. Two minutes later on the power play, Saskatoon cut the lead to one goal as Shmyr scored his second of the night on the power play. The Blades fought to tie the game, but the Americans held on for the win.
Tri-City snaps a three-game losing streak.
The Americans were unsuccessful with two power play attempts and spent 10 minutes in the penalty box. Saskatoon converted 1-of-3 power play opportunities and recorded eight penalty minutes.
Evan Sarthou stopped 20 shots in the win while Evan Smith made 27 saves in the loss.
There is no time to rest for the Americans, as they are back in action tomorrow, Saturday, Jan. 16, against the Regina Pats (19-20-3-3, 44 pts). Game time is at 7:05 p.m. at the Toyota Center. Tri-City has won five straight against Regina, including a 3-1 win last season at Brandt Centre. Tickets are available at all Ticketmaster locations, including the Toyota Center Box Office, at any Fred Meyer outlet or online at Ticketmaster.com.
Jack in the Box Three Stars
1. Jordan Topping, Tri-City
2. Braylon Shmyr, Saskatoon
3. Beau McCue, Tri-City
WHL Box Score: CLICK HERE