Winterhawks rally, fall in OT to Seattle

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The Portland Winterhawks staged a big third period comeback but dropped a 5-4 Western Hockey League decision in overtime in Seattle against the Thunderbirds on Saturday.

After Seattle’s Justin Hickman opened the scoring at the 13:51 mark of the first, Portland (18-5-2-1) evened it when Taylor Leier scored a shorthanded goal late in the frame to make it 1-1 going into the second.

It remained tied until there were just under two minutes remaining in the second, when Seattle’s Roberts Lipsbergs and Branden Troock scored late goals to give the Thunderbirds a 3-1 lead.

The Winterhawks started their comeback when Keegan Iverson beat Seattle netminder Justin Myles at the 7:58 mark of the third to get within one at 3-2. Nic Petan evened the game at 3-3 when he scored a power play goal at the 12:02 mark, and the Hawks took their first lead of the game just under two minutes later on a goal by Brendan Leipsic to make it 4-3. Seattle then tied the game at 4-4 at the 16:43 mark on Hickman’s second of the game to force overtime.

With under a minute to go in the extra frame, Seattle’s Alexander Delnov scored to give the Thunderbirds a 5-4 win. With the game having gone to overtime, the Hawks picked up a point in the standings.

Leier and Leipsic each registered two points in the overtime defeat. Brendan Burke stopped 34 of 39 shots in goal for Portland, while Myles allowed four goals on 35 Hawks shots.

Portland was 1-2 on the power play and a perfect 5-5 on the penalty kill with a shorthanded goal.

The Hawks are off until Friday, when they travel to Spokane to take on the Chiefs.