Winterhawks close in on sweep of Everett
Three down, one to go for the Portland Winterhawks.
The Winterhawks won Game 3 of their first round Western Hockey League playoff series, beating Everett 5-4 Wednesday at Everett, Wash.
Portland, leading the best-of-seven series 3-0, can close it out at 7 p.m. Thursday at Everett.
Portland fired 50 shots at Everett netminder Luke Siemens, with a 19-7 edge in the second period that included two goals in 13 seconds from Nino Niederreiter and Ty Rattie that gave the Hawks a lead they wouldn't relinquish.
Portland opened the scoring just 4:21 into the game when Sven Bartschi scored his first career playoff goal to give Portland the early 1-0 lead.
Everett's Ryan Murray tied the game at the 14:41 mark, but just 27 seconds later Brad Ross stepped out of the penalty box and took a pass from Niederreiter and came into the Everett zone on a breakaway, beating Siemens with a power-play goal to make it 2-1. Everett tied the game with a power-play goal from Tyler Maxwell with 42 seconds remaining in the period to tie the game at 2-2 going into the first intermission.
The Silvertips took their first lead of the series 9:40 into the second period when Rasmus Rissanen scored a power-play goal to give the Silvertips a 3-2 lead. It was short-lived, though, as late in the period the Winterhawks got goals from Niederreiter and Rattie just 13 seconds apart to take a 4-3 lead into the third period.
Ryan Johansen added to the lead at the 14:00 mark with a highlight reel goal when he brought the puck into the Everett zone and put a backhand shot through a sliver of daylight just under the crossbar to give the Winterhawks a 5-3 lead.
Everett closed the gap and made it 5-4 with 1:31 remaining when they pulled Siemens for an extra attacker, leading to Rissanen scoring his second of the game to bring the Silvertips to within one. Siemens remained on the bench as Everett pressed for the tying goal, but the Winterhawks kept them at bay.
Mac Carruth got the win in net for Portland, stopping 34 of 38 shots. Siemens made 45 saves for Everett on 50 Portland shots.