Four goal second period lifts Warriors to win in Everett

Stephan Simon

Moose Jaw scored four goals in the second period Friday and picked up their first win on their road trip as they downed the Everett Silvertips 6-3 at Xfinity Arena.

In the first period both teams fought for their ice and their opportunities.  There was plenty of battles along the boards in all three zones and in front of the net as the teams looked to get their offenses going.

Six minutes in to the game the Silvertips won a faceoff in the Moose Jaw zone.  Defenseman Kevin Davis made a short pass to Sean Richards on top of the right circles where he put a low shot in to traffic that found the back of the net.

Moose Jaw was able to tie the game one in the final minute of the first period.  Jayden Halbgewachs tracked the puck in the Everett right corner and chipped it behind the net for Brett Howden.  The Captain forced his way to the side of the Silvertip net and then set up Noah Gregor in the low slot where he scored his 6th of the season.

The battles continued in the second period and so did the offense for the Warriors.  Four and a half minutes in to the period Matthew Benson sprung 20-year-old Brayden Burke for a breakaway.  Burke missed the net on his initial shot but the puck bounced off the end boards to the side of the net where Burke smacked it in to make it 2-1 Moose Jaw.

The lead was short lived for the Warriors as Everett came back just under a minute later with a goal from Matt Fonteyne.

Moose Jaw was a determined team in the second period.  They had a strong work ethic and utilized their speed in all three zones which helped to produce even more offence.

At 10:50 the Warriors landed on the power play and set up Brett Howden who lifted a backhand to the twine to make it 3-2.  Under a minute later Luka Burzan led a rush up the ice on the right wing side, Burzan put a shot in to the pads of goalie Dorrin Luding and rebound came to Justin Almeida driving the net where he scored his 6th of the year.

After the goal Everett pulled their starting goaltender as Luding allowed four goals on 22 shots in just over 31 minutes.

The Warriors went up by three just over two minutes later when Noah Gregor burst through the neutral zone on the right wing.  He flew past the defenseman and lifted the puck over the blocker of new goalie Blake Lyda for his second goal of the game.

Everett made a strong push at the start of the third period.  Just over 60 seconds in to the frame 20-year-old Patrick Bajkov out-worked a pair of Warriors on the right boards and then played the puck to Sean Richards on top of the right circle where he scored his second of the game.

The Silvertips outshot the Warriors 20-5 in the third period and 48-33 but 17-year-old rookie goalie Adam Evanoff was on his game.  The Penticton, BC product made a number of keys saves in the final period including a penalty shot for Matt Fonteyne with seven and a half minutes remaining in regulation and finished with 45 saves.

Moose Jaw went on to add a shorthanded empty net with under 90 seconds left and picked up the 6-3 win improving their record to 8-3 on the season.

Captain Brett Howden led the offense with two goals and four points and Noah Gregor had two goals and three points.

Moose Jaw was 1-for-2 on the power play and 5-for-5 on the penalty kill.

The Warriors remain in the Pacific Northwest Saturday for a battle against the reigning WHL Champion Seattle Thunderbirds.  Catch all the action on Country 100 starting with the Westrum Lumber Timber Mart PreGame Show at 7:40pm.

This will be the first and only meeting of the season between the Warriors and Thunderbirds, Moose Jaw is 2-1-0-1 against the Thunderbirds in the last five years which includes a 1-0-0-1 record in Seattle.

Last season the Thunderbirds beat the Warriors 5-1 November 5th at Mosaic Place.  Brayden Watts scored the only goal for the Warriors while Brody Willms took the loss in net.  Scott Eansor led Seattle with three goals, Reece Harsch had a goal and two points, Nolan Volcan and Matthew Wedman had two assists each, and Matt Berlin got the win.

The last time they played in Seattle was November 28, 2015, that night the Warriors edged the Thunderbirds 3-2 in overtime.  Noah Gregor led the Warriors with two goals, Josh Brook had two assists, Tanner Jeannot had one goal, and Zach Sawchenko got the win.  Mathew Barzal led Seattle with a goal and two points and Logan Flodell took the loss.

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