Kent, WA- Tri-City wanted to go into the break on a high note.
Beau McCue made sure of that, scoring two goals en route to the Tri-City Americans (20-12-1-2, 43 pts) earning a 4-1 win over the Seattle Thunderbirds (16-17-1-1, 34 pts) in the ShoWare Center.
With the win, Tri-City has earned 20 wins at the winter break for the fifth time in the last six seasons
The Americans earn their first win in three meetings with the Thunderbirds this season and remain undefeated on the road at 4-0 this month. The Americans also carry a two game overall win streak into the break.
Tri-City got off to a quick start, as Beau McCue put a shot into the net 58 seconds into the game to make it 1-0. Seattle would tie the game about two minutes later, as Justin Hickman would shoot a loose puck into the net on the power play. Seattle had more opportunities in the period, outshooting the Americans 14-7 along with two power play chances, but both teams had a goal after one.
The Americans started the second period on a good note, as Ryan Chynoweth picked up a rebound and flipped a backhand into the goal for an early 2-1 lead. Tri-City had the shot advantage in the second 12-9 and created more opportunities, allowing the Americans to hold a 2-1 lead after two periods.
Seattle created a few good opportunities to tie the game in the first half of the third period, but couldn’t get it by Eric Comrie. The Americans capitalized on a chance midway through the third as Malte Strömwall fired a wrist shot from the slot into the back of the net for a 3-1 lead. And McCue would put the game out of reach as he scored his second goal of the game to increase the lead to three with six minutes left in the game. Comrie was solid in net down the stretch to help the Americans earn the win.
With two assists tonight, Justin Feser moves into seventh alone on the Americans all-time points list with 288 and comes within one assist of tying Dylan Gyori for 10th on the Americans all-time assists list with 159. He is one game shy of tying Kruise Reddick for seventh on the Americans all-time games played list with 315.
Comrie made 29 saves in the win, while Seattle goaltender Brandon Glover made 28 saves in the loss.
The team starts the holiday break tomorrow, but will be back in action on December 28 when they take on the Portland Winterhawks (29-5-1-0, 59 pts) in the Toyota Center. Game time is at 7:05 p.m. Tri-City has lost three of four meetings against Portland, the most recent a 4-1 loss in Kennewick on December 9. The only win for the Americans this year was at Portland 3-2 earlier this month. NewsTalk 870 will broadcast the game beginning at 6:45 p.m. with the pregame show. WHL Live will stream the game online starting at 7:00 p.m. Tickets are available at the Toyota Center Box Office, any Fred Meyer outlet, at any Ticketmaster location or online at Ticketmaster.com.
Jack in the Box Three Stars:
1. Eric Comrie, Tri-City
2. Beau McCue, Tri-City
3. Brendan Rouse, Seattle