The Kamloops Blazers defeated the Seattle Thunderbirds 4-2 in a Western Hockey League game Saturday night in front of 5,052 at the accesso ShoWare Center.
On T-Birds Military Appreciation Night, the team wore special military-themed jerseys that were auctioned off during the game to support military charities.
Kamloops (7-12-0-0) took a 1-0 lead at 1:30 of the first period on a power-play goal by Nick Chyzowski. Garret Pilon and Joe Gatenby had the assists.
The Blazers made it a 2-0 lead at 4:58 of the first on a goal from Ondrej Vala. Pilon had the only assist.
The T-Birds outshot the Blazers 13-11 in the first period.
Seattle (9-7-1-1) cut the Kamloops lead to one at 3:42 of the second period. Matthew Wedman took a pass on the left wing from Austin Strand to go on a two-on-one break with Blake Bargar. Wedman centered the puck from the left circle to Bargar and he redirected the puck through Kamloops goalie Max Palaga’s legs.
The T-Bird tied the game 2-2 on the power play 1:37 after Bargar’s goal. Donovan Neuls passed the puck from the right point to Nolan Volcan to the right of the goal. Volcan centered the puck to Ian Briscoe in the slot who took a wrist shot. Volcan knocked the rebound of Briscoe’s shot past Palaga.
The Blazers took a 3-2 lead at 15:31 of the second on a goal from Quinn Benjafield. Pilon and Vala had the assists.
Kamloops outshot Seattle 11-10 in the second period. The T-Birds had a 23-22 advantage in shots after two periods.
The T-Birds pulled goalie Liam Hughes with two minutes left in the game for an extra attacker. Jermain Loewen scored an unassisted empty-net goal with 29 seconds left in the game to secure the win for the Blazers.
The Blazers outshot the T-Birds 10-3 in the third period and 32-26 in the game.
Hughes is now 4-3-1-0 after stopping 28 of 31 shots.
Palaga improves to 2-2-0-0 stopping 24 of 26 shots.
Next up: Prince Albert
The T-Birds host the Prince Albert Raiders at 7:05 p.m. Tuesday for the second Directors Mortgage 2-for-Tuesday game of the season.
Single-game tickets for the regular season are on sale online on the T-Birds website and at the ShoWare Center box office.
Season tickets may be purchased by calling the T-Birds office at 253-239-7825.
First period – 1, Kamloops, Chyzowski 5 (Pilon, Gatenby), 1:30 (pp). 2, Kamloops, Vala 4 (Pilon), 4:58. Penalties – Wedman, Sea (holding), 1:25. McNelly, Sea (major-fighting), 7:02. Ludwar, Kam (major-fighting), 7:02. Palaga, Kam (delay of game-served by Ludwar), 16:38.
Second period – 3, Seattle, Bargar 4 (Wedman, Strand), 3:42. 4, Seattle, Volcan 5 (Briscoe, Neuls) 5:19 (pp). 5, Kamloops, Benjafield 4 (Vala, Pilon), 15:31. Penalties – Benjafield, Kam (interference), 4:27. Pilon, Kam (hooking), 9:24. Hamaliuk, Sea (charging), 17:52. Neuls, Sea (major-fighting), 17:52. Stuart, Kam (major-fighting), 17:52.
Third period – 6, Kamloops, Loewen 8, 19:31 (en). Penalties – Benjafield, Kam (hooking), 8:57. Benjafield, Kam (roughing), 19:41. Reagan, Kam (double minor-roughing, 10-minute misconduct), 19:41. Hamaliuk, Sea (cross checking, roughing), 19:41. Malukhin, Sea (roughing), 19:41. McNelly, Sea (roughing), 19:41.
Shots on goal – Seattle 13-10-3 26, Kamloops 11-11-10 32. Goalies – Seattle, Hughes 31 shots-28 saves (4-3-1-0); Kamloops, Palaga 26-24 (2-2-0-0). Power plays – Seattle 1-3; Kamloops 1-4. A – 5,052. Referees – Brett Iverson, Ryan O’Keeffe. Linesmen – Michael Bean, Nathan Van Oosten.