By Annie Fowler | Tri-City Herald
A game in hand is only worth something if you earn the points that come with.
Working off one of their three games while Prince George is idle, the Tri-City Americans played one of their better games in quite some time. But it wasn’t near enough as the Portland Winterhawks skated away with a 5-1 victory before a Wednesday night crowd of 3,458 at Toyota Center.
“Not enough (good efforts) to beat what is a really good team,” said Tri-City coach Jim Hiller. “Some guys really went for it, but not enough to beat them. To beat teams like Portland and Kelowna, you need to have every guy at the top of their game. We didn’t have enough of them.”
The Americans (28-30-3-5, 64 points), who lost their sixth in a row on home ice, still have a four-point lead over PG for the eighth and final Western Conference playoff spot with six games to play. The Cougars have four games remaining.
Portland (48-13-2-3, 101 points), which had its 21-game win streak snapped by Seattle last weekend, already has sewn up the U.S. Division title and is nine points back of Kelowna in the race for the Scotty Munro Trophy for the best record in the league.