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WHL US DIVISION – Everett Silvertips Notebook: 'Tips continue to stay hot.

The Silvertips earned eight points in four games, including a matchup against rival Seattle, to increase their lead in the division.

Edited by Tiffany Villigan

Ben Nelms/Getty Images

The Silvertips had an important weekend beginning Friday, January 15, in Vancouver. Everett, who leads the US Division by three points over Seattle, would have a crucial game against their rivals Saturday night. The Silvertips would wrap up their quick two-game homestand with a Monday matinee matchup against the Saskatoon Blades.

Defeated Vancouver 3-2

Everett would get on the board first with Remi Laurencelle scoring his team-leading 25th goal at 8:07. Carson Stadnyk sent a shot by the blue line and deflected off Laurencelle into the net. Dmitry Osipov would help Vancouver tie the game at 11:03, sending a shot near the blue line that snuck past Carter Hart. Eighteen seconds later the Giants would tack on another goal and make it a 2-1 game. Hart tried to make a pass from behind the net but Alec Baer was right there to intercept the puck. Baer sent a quick shot at the net and the puck ricocheted off of Tristen Pfeifer’s stick into the net. Patrick Bajkov would help Everett even the game out at 12:44. Stadnyk sent a feed from behind the net to Bajkov, who wristed one from the slot past Ryan Kubic. After one period the game would remain even at two with Everett outshooting Vancouver 9-8.

The Silvertips would get the go-ahead goal from Connor Dewar at 7:08. Dewar received a pass from Dario Winkler at the left circle then sent a shot beating Kubic stick side. Everett would maintain their lead after two periods and continued outshooting the Giants 8-7.

Everett was less than two minutes away from sealing the victory when Winkler was called for a trip at 18:06. The Giants would pull Kubic for an extra attacker with over a minute remaining in the contest but were unable to find the equalizer. The Giants outshot Everett 8-5 in the final period. Carter Hart stopped 21/23 shots in the win.

Defeated Seattle 5-1

With Seattle also winning the previous night, this game was important for Everett if they wanted to gain ground over the Thunderbirds. The two teams met last week with Seattle winning 3-2 in overtime. Both teams came out hard trying to set the tone in the first period. Despite a couple chances from each team, neither was able to find the back of the net. Seattle outshot Everett 7-6 in the 1st period.

Midway through the 2nd period Cole MacDonald would help Everett strike first. At 10:49 MacDonald sent a shot from behind the left circle that snuck past Landon Bow. Twenty-five seconds later the Silvertips would strike again with Connor Dewar sending a shot from the right circle that would beat Bow. The Silvertips would maintain their 2-0 lead after two periods while outshooting Seattle 13-10.

Bryan Allbee would be called for a hook at 2:08, giving the Silvertips a chance to add to their lead. Everett would capitalize on the man advantage with MacDonald scoring his 2nd of the night at 2:54. MacDonald’s second goal of the night was almost identical to his first -- a shot from behind the left circle. Less than a minute later Kevin Davis would continue the trend of defensemen scoring. Davis would send a wrister from the high slot past Bow’s glove side. After giving up his 4th goal Bow was pulled and replaced by Logan Flodell. Frustration seemed to be setting in with Seattle, which lead to Turner Ottenbreit being called for a hold at 9:42. It would only take Everett eight seconds to cash in on the man advantage. Remi Laurencelle would maintain possession of the puck after a rebounded shot and found a wide-open Carson Stadnyk down by the right post to bury the goal and give Everett the 5-0 lead. Seattle would manage to tack on a late goal at 16:15. After a rebounded shot Donovan Neuls would send a backhander that would sneak under Carter Hart’s pads. Seattle would be unable to score anymore and Everett would get the decisive 5-1 victory. Carter Hart stopped 25/26 shots in the win.

The Silvertips did a great job staying out of the penalty box, only giving Seattle one power play. "The coaches were on us all game saying stay out of the scrums so they get the penalties and not us," said MacDonald. "We just stayed clean today and it payed off." The Silvertips were able to keep Mathew Barzal and his line off the score sheet. "They’re a really quick line and we know that they are one of the best lines in the league," said Davis. "We tried to have a good stick in the d-zone and not give them a lot of time and space." In the previous matchup against Seattle that line scored all three goals with Barzal tallying two of them. "We tried getting the puck deep and getting the fore check and try to play in their zone," MacDonald added.

Defeated Saskatoon 2-1 in OT

Everett hosted the Saskatoon Blades for a Monday matinee matchup before hitting the road. The game was looking to be scoreless after one period until Saskatoon broke the goose egg at 19:00. Nick Zajac would skate around behind the net and center a pass to Mason McCarty in the slot, who then sent a wrister past Carter Hart. The Blades would remain on top after one period despite being outshot 9-12.

Only 58 seconds in the 2nd period and Everett was able to get the equalizer from Brandon Ralph. Ralph was able to cash in off a Matt Fonteyne rebounded shot down by the right post. Both teams were held scoreless for the rest of the 2nd and 3rd periods. After three, the game was tied 1-1 with Everett leading in shots 29-27.

Everett would end the game in overtime with a goal from Connor Dewar at 1:29. Dawson Leedahl and Dewar would skate into the offensive zone with a 2-on-1 advantage that led to Dewar finishing a one-timer. Carter Hart stopped 27/28 shots in the win.

Defeated Kamloops 2-1

Kamloops would get on the board early in the first period with a garbage goal from Quinn Benjafield. Carter Hart made a save from the initial shot from the blue line.  However, Benjafield was standing right in front of him to put away the rebound at 2:47. The Silvertips would answer back at 10:15 with a goal by Graham Millar. Patrick Bajkov forced a turnover behind the Kamloops net and would send a feed to Millar who came crashing in, burying a sharp angle shot past Connor Ingram. After one period the game was even at one with Everett leading in shots 12-6.

Despite many chances neither team would find the back of the net during period number two. Kamloops would outshoot Everett 11-9 in the 2nd period.

Everett would get the go-ahead goal from Matt Fonteyne at 3:43 in the 3rd period. Fonteyne gained possession of the loose puck in front of the Kamloops blue line then proceeded to skate past the Kamloops defender leading to a backhanded shot. The shot from Fonteyne hit the post but tailing Kamloops defenders came crashing behind Fonteyne and inadvertently deflected the puck in their own net. The Blazers would pull Ingram for an extra attacker with less than two minutes remaining. Dawson Leedahl would be called for interference at 19:18, which gave Kamloops a 6-on-4 advantage for 42 seconds. Despite many chances and heavily out shooting Everett in the final period 17-6, the Blazers were unable to find the equalizer. The Blazers outshot Everett 34-27 in the game. Carter Hart stopped 33/34 shots to pick up his 27th win of the season.

With 60 points, Everett now leads the division over 2nd place Seattle by seven points. Carter Hart continues to stay red hot, leading the league while lowering his GAA to 1.90. The Silvertips have only allowed 94 goals this season, leading the WHL and in fact the entire Canadian Hockey League.