Junior hockey report: Winterhawks welcome 8 millionth fan

By Paul Danzer, Columbian community sports reporter

Published:

 

Portland Winterhawks

This week: 7:05 p.m. Friday vs. Moose Jaw (Memorial Coliseum); 3:30 p.m. Sunday vs. Spokane (Memorial Coliseum); 7 p.m. Monday, vs. Vancouver (Moda Center).

Last week: Lost 3-2 at Victoria (shootout); beat Victoria 2-1; beat Vancouver 5-4.

Where they stand: At 28-12-2-3, the Winterhawks have 61 points. They lead by four points over Seattle in the U.S. Division. Kelowna owns the best record in the league (36-5-0-2, 74 points). Portland is seventh in this week’s top-10 for all three CHL junior hockey leagues as voted by NHL scouts.

Dumba to debut: Defenseman Matt Dumba, who played 13 games in the NHL this season with the Minnesota Wild, arrived in Portland on Tuesday and is expected to make his Winterhawks debut on Friday.

Pro prospect news: Forward Chase De Leo played for Team Cherry, which lost 4-3 to Team Orr in Wednesday’s annual CHL Top Prospects Game in Calgary. De Leo is the 26th best North American skater in the NHL Central Scouting midseason rankings, which were released on Monday. Other Winterhawks on the list are Alex Schoenborn (57), Keegan Iverson (64) and Dominic Turgeon (130).

Citizenship for Johnston: Winterhawks coach and general manager Mike Johnston became an American citizen on Wednesday, taking the oath during a ceremony in Portland. Johnston was born in Nova Scotia.

Winterhawks sign draft pick: Defenseman Blake Heinrich, a fifth round draft pick of the Washington Capitals in the 2013 NHL Draft, has signed with the Winterhawks. Heinrich, 18, currently plays with Sioux City of the United States Hockey League and will join the Hawks at the conclusion of the Musketeers’ season. He can play in up to six games for Portland this season and will be a full-time Winterhawk next season.

Attendance milestone: On Sunday, the 8 millionth fan to attend a Winterhawks home game will receive a prize package including season tickets for next season. Doors open at 2:20 p.m. for the 3:30 p.m. game. The Winterhawks have been in Portland since the 1976-77 season, when they moved from Edmonton.

Fort Vancouver Vipers

This week: 7:35 p.m. on Saturday vs. Eugene (Mountain View Ice Arena); 5:30 p.m. on Sunday at Tri-City, 7:35 p.m.; 7:35 p.m. Jan. 24 at Bellingham.

Last week: Lost at Tri-Cities 7-1; lost at West Sound 17-0; lost to Tri-Cities 7-4; lost to Eugene 6-2 on Thursday.

Where they stand: At 0-30, the Vipers are last in the five-team NPHL. Bellingham (25-5) and West Sound (22-2-1-2) are the only teams with winning records.

Roster grows: Anton Kostyuchenko, a 19-year-old from Minsk, Belarus, scored a goal on Thursday in his first Vipers game. The forward is one of several recent additions to the roster. Among the others are returnees Tyler Falk of Colorado and Cisco Yslas, and Levi Waterman of Vancouver.

100 shots?: The official statistics from Wednesday’s game against Tri-Cities had the Outlaws putting 103 shots on goal and crediting goalie Jacob Mullen with 96 saves. Vipers coach Mike Dickerman said that number wasn’t accurate, adding that his team actually played pretty well in the 7-3 loss. The NHL record for shots on goal in a game is 83 by the 1941 Boston Bruins in a 3-2 win over the Chicago Blackhawks.