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WHL US Division – Everett Silvertips Notebook: Tips' pick up four points against US Division

Despite their struggles on special teams Everett has clawed their way into 2nd place in the US Division. Everett only trails Seattle by two points for the division lead.

Mr. Hill at the net
Mr. Hill at the net

Everett had an important week beginning on December 9 with three games against US Division opponents. The Silvertips trailed Seattle by four points for the division lead. Everett would have to make do without the service of Noah Juulsen who would depart after Wednesday's game for Hockey Canada's Camp.

Lost to Portland Winterhawks 7-5

The Silvertips had a Wednesday night matchup against their US Division rival Portland Winterhawks. This was the sixth meeting between the two teams with Portland leading the season series 3-2. Everett came out the aggressor in this one, striking first when Cole MacDonald sent a pass to the slot with Carson Stadnyk waiting and wristing one that snuck by Adin Hill. Seconds later, Everett scored again with Remi Laurencelle putting one in the back of the net. The referee immediately waived the goal off due to interference. Dawson Leedahl and Jack Dougherty were battling in front of the net pushing one-another which resulted in Dougherty falling on Hill. At 9:44, Jake Christiansen was given two minutes for a trip which would lead to a Portland goal on the ensuing power play. Rihards Bukarts would recover the puck off a rebound then skate around to the right circle and fire one past Carter to even things at 1-1.

Laurencelle caused a turnover behind the net and would find Stadnyk by the right circle which led to him sneaking one past Hill for his second of the night and help Everett regain the lead 12 seconds later. Spencer Gerth would be called for an interference at 18:03 and Everett would have to kill a penalty to end the period. With three seconds remaining Cody Glass was given two minutes for a trip. There would be three seconds of 4-on-4 hockey to start the second period and then Everett would have a power play. After one period Everett would lead 2-1 outshooting Portland 12-6. Three seconds ticked away and the Tips' were on a power play. An unlucky rebound would end up on the stick of Alex Schoenborn. He would skate into Everett's zone on the right side sending a wrist shot past Hart's glove side for a shorthanded goal to even the game up. At 3:46 Yan Khomenko would help Everett regain the lead, sending the puck down low in traffic past Hill's glove side. After two periods Everett led 3-2, outshooting Portland 24-14.

Everett would increase their lead by two goals just 28 seconds into the third. Leedahl forced a turnover, found a wide-open Laurencelle by the right post, who was able to roof his own rebound. At 2:21 Christiansen would send a wrister past Hill to increase the Silvertips lead 5-2. This would cause Winterhawks coach Jamie Kompon to call a timeout and regroup after giving up two quick goals. Not to long after Portland had a power play opportunity when Brandon Ralph was given two minutes for roughing. Bukarts would fire one past Hart to cut Everett's lead to two goals. Shortly after Portland scored on the power play they would go back on with Stadnyk being called for a hook at 5:33. Only four seconds on the power play Caleb Jones would blast a slap shot by the blue line past Hart making it a one goal game. After giving up two quick goals, Coach Constantine called a timeout as well.

Everett would be given a bench minor at 9:20 for too many which gave Portland another power play. Hart attempted to play the puck behind the net but Schoenborn was right there to cause a turnover. Trying to rush back in net Hart would get tangled up with Trsiten Pfeifer and Scoenborn would feed a pass to Bukarts for the hat-trick. The game was now tied with Everett blowing their three goal lead. Portland would take the lead at 15:49 when Cody Glass scored on the rebound of a one timer. The Winterhawks would tack on one more goal when Colton Veloso scored off the rebound on a wide open right side. The Silvertips lost 5-7 while outshooting Portland 38-31. Hart stopped 24-of-31 shots in the loss. Even though Portland forced seven goals, the Winterhawks had no player with a plus for the game. Stadnyk finished the game a +4 while three others had a +3. "To lose that, especially in the US Division this is a huge week for us," said Stadnyk. "To not get these two points or at least a point out of this game is a tough loss."

Defeated Tri-City Americans 3-2

Everett had to put their third period collapse behind them and focus on facing the Tri-City Americans. Just a week before these two squared off against each other with a decisive 4-1 Tri-City victory. Just 1:31 into the game and Everett would already have to kill a penalty with Matt Fonteyne being called for boarding. The Silvertips special team woes continued as a result of Tri-City scoring in 36 seconds on the man advantage. Juuso Valimaki took a pass that was delivered right in front of Carter Hart and buried it for the 1-0 lead. Due to Tri-City having their teddy bear toss soon after the goal was scored stuffed animals hit the ice and this caused a short delay. At 14:39 Everett would be shorthanded with Brian King being called for a high stick. Vladislav Lukin would connect a shot from the point beating Hart putting Tri-City up 2-0 on another power play goal. 16 seconds later Remi Laurencelle would beat Evan Sarthou with a backhander glove side to cut the Americans lead to one. Lukin was given two minutes for high stick at 17:46 and Everett would go on the power play. Brycen sent a wrister from the blue line and Dawson Leedahl would deflect the puck past Sarthou to even things.

After one period the game was tied 2-2 with Everett outshooting the Americans 12-10. Parker Bowles would be called for a hook at 14:41 in the second and Everett would capitalize. Graham Millar would bury a rebound in front a crowded net to give Everett a 3-2 lead. After two periods Everett had the lead and was outshooting Tri-City 22-15. Despite outshooting Everett in the third period 9-3 the Americans were unable to find an equalizer. The Silvertips were able to hold on and win 3-2. Carter Hart stopped 22-of-24 shots in the win.

Defeated Seattle Thunderbirds 4-1

The Silvertips had a Saturday night matchup against the Seattle Thunderbirds for the first time in their barn. Seattle had to play without the service of Mathew Barzal who leads the team with 43 points. He along with Juulsen were attending Hockey Canada's Selection camp for the world juniors. Seattle would strike first at 12:44 when Turner Ottenbreit hit a slap shot back by the blue line that zipped past Carter Hart. Despite many chances and outshooting Seattle 16-7, the Silvertips trailed 1-0 after one period. At 16:29 Patrick Bajkov would send a wrister by the left circle beating Logan Flodell glove side to even things at one. After two periods the game was tied 1-1 with Everett still outshooting Seattle 25-20. Only 44 seconds in the third period and Everett was able to take the lead. Remi Laurencelle buried a shot inside the near post after a tic-tac-toe pass with Carson Stadnyk. Jared Hauf would be called for a rough at 7:44 giving Everett their second power play opportunity of the night. Cole MacDonald connected on a pass from Laurencelle to wrist one past Flodell's glove side giving the Silvertips a 3-1 lead. Bajkov would tack on another goal at 12:07 to help give Everett a decisive 4-1 win. Carter Hart stopped 26/27 shots to pick up his 17th win of the season.

Despite allowing ten goals during the week Carter Hart still leads the league with a 1.90 GAA. Remi Laurencelle continues to produce for Everett scoring three goals and adding three assists to lead the team with 29 points. The Silvertips are now just two points behind Seattle for first place in the US Division.

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Jujhar Kharia was involved in his first NHL fight on December 9th against former T-bird Brenden Dillon. Khaira has two assists in eight games this season with the Edmonton Oilers.