Third-period spree sends Winterhawks to win
Joel Hofer made 33 saves and the Portland Winterhawks scored five third-period goals to beat the Everett Silvertips 5-1 on Saturday in front of 8,012 fans at Memorial Coliseum.
The Western Hockey League game was the first home contest in 2019 for the Winterhawks and the home debut for Hofer and for forward Josh Paterson, who were acquired in trades while the Hawks were on their six-game swing through the East Division.
Cody Glass had a goal and two assists as the Winterhawks improved to 27-12-3-2 (59 points). Everett leads the U.S. Division at 33-11-1-1 (68).
Hofer was 15.8 seconds away from a shutout in his home debut. Everett's Jackson Berezowski put home a rebound off a deflected point shot to spoil the bid.
But the third period belonged to the Hawks, who broke a scoreless tie on Joachim Blichfeld's backhand shot from the low slot 3:56 into the final frame. It was Blichfeld's 39th goal of the season.
Defenseman Jared Freadrich poked home a loose puck 5:05 into the third period, a power-play tally off an assist from Glass to make the score 2-0.
Portland put away Everett with three goals in a span of 2:41 late in the period. Glass made it 3-0 with his 13th goal off the season, with Paterson and Blichfeld picking up assists and 4:41 left.
Jake Gricius found the empty net for his 20th of the season with 2:38 left.
And Brendan De Jong, in his first game back from a concussion, scored his sixth of the season with the net empty and two minutes left.
Portland was 1 for 5 on the power play and killed all five Everett power plays. The Silvertips outshot the Hawks 34-32, and Everett goalie Dustin Wolf made 27 saves on 30 shots.
The Winterhawks are back at the coliseum on Sunday for a 5 p.m. game against the Tri-City Americans.