The Seattle Thunderbirds defeated the Regina Pats 6-3 Wednesday night in front of a boisterous and season-high 6,149 fans at the accesso ShoWare Center.
The T-Birds won the 2017 WHL championship with a 4-2 best-of-seven series win over the Pats on May 14 in Regina. This was the only meeting of the year between the teams.
Matt Berlin had a solid game in net for the T-Birds, making 33 saves on 36 shots to improve his record to 7-5-0-1.
Regina (13-10-2-0) took a 1-0 lead at 10:15 of the first period on a five-on-three power-play goal from Sam Steel. Josh Mahura and Matt Bradley had the assists.
Seattle (11-9-1-1) tied the game 1-1 at 14:37 of the first. Matthew Wedman took a shot that rebounded high into the air off Regina goalie Tyler Brown. The puck landed in the low slot where several T-Birds got a whack at it before it popped into the low left circle. Tyszka pinched down from the left point snap and snapped the puck past the Brown for his second goal of the season.
Both teams had 14 shots on goal in the first period.
The T-Birds went in front 2-1 2:57 into the second period. Reece Harsch pushed the puck up the right boards to create a two-on-one for Noah Philp and Zack Andrusiak. Philp crossed the puck from the right circle to Andrusiak in the left circle. Andrusiak snapped the puck over Brown’s blocker as the goalie lunged to make the save.
The Pats tied it 2-2 at 3:39 of the second on a goal from Cale Fleury. Mahura and Braydon Buziak had the assists.
Andrusiak struck a second time, at 9:30 of the second on the power play, to give the T-Birds a 3-2 lead. Turner Ottenbreit passed the puck from center ice to Philp in the left circle. Philp crossed the puck to Andrusiak in the right circle and he snapped it past Brown low on the glove side.
Seattle outshot Regina 15-10 in the second period and led 29-24 in shots after two periods.
Steel tied the game 3-3 22 seconds into the third period. Fleury and Robbie Holmes had the assists.
Seattle then scored two goals in 2:09 to take a 5-3 lead. Ottenbreit took a wrist shot from the left point that rebounded off Brown right to Sami Moilanen at the bottom of the left circle. Moilanen slid the puck under Brown at 12:08 of the period for his 12th goal of the season. Donovan Neuls had the second assist.
Then Neuls scored from the right circle on the power play at 14:17 to make it a two-goal lead. Austin Strand moved the puck from the left wall to Tyszka at center ice. Tyszka sent the puck to Neuls who beat Brown with a slap shot over the glove.
Regina pulled Brown with 2:32 left in the game for an extra attacker. Wedman picked up a loose puck in the neutral zone and fired it into the empty net for the T-Birds sixth goal.
Seattle outshot Regina 40-36 in the game.
Brown finished with 33 saves on 39 shots and his record is now 9-7-2-0.
On the road again
The T-Birds are in Victoria for two games against the Royals this weekend. They play Friday and Saturday at 7:05 p.m. The T-Birds’ next home game is 6:05 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 2, at the ShoWare Center against the Kamloops Blazers.
Single-game tickets for the regular season are on sale online on the T-Birds website and at the ShoWare box office.
Season tickets may be purchased by calling the T-Birds office at 253-239-7825.
First period – 1, Regina, Steel 8 (Mahura, Bradley), 10:15 (pp). 2, Seattle, Tyszka 2 (Wedman, Strand), 14:37. Penalties – Mahura, Reg (hooking), 3:54. Strand, Sea (interference), 9:09. Volcan, Sea (delay of game), 9:17.
Second period – 3, Seattle, Andrusiak 9 (Philp, Harsch), 2:57. 4, Regina, Fleury 7 (Mahura, Buziak), 3:39. 5, Seattle, Andrusiak 10 (Philp, Ottenbreit), 9:30 (pp). Penalties – Sloboshan, Reg (interference), 7:23.
Third period – 6, Regina, Steel 9 (Fleury, Holmes), :22. 7, Seattle, Moilanen 12 (Ottenbreit, Neuls), 12:08. 8, Seattle, Neuls 5 (Tyszka, Strand), 14:17 (pp). 9, Seattle, Wedman 2, 18:15 (en). Penalties – Neuls, Sea (boarding), 5:17. Sidaway, Reg (roughing), 8:37. Huo, Sea (roughing), 8:37. Buziak, Reg (roughing), 8:37. Lee, Sea (major-fighting), 8:37. Sloboshan, Reg (major-fighting), 8:37. Carpendale, Sea (major-fighting, game misconduct), 8:37. Schiloer, Reg (major-fighting, game misconduct), 8:37. Mahura, Reg (holding), 13:38. Sidaway, Reg (roughing), 19:00. Morrisseau, Reg (roughing), 19:00. Lee, Sea (roughing), 19:00. Harsch, Sea (roughing), 19:00.
Shots on goal – Seattle 14-15-11 40, Regina 14-10-12 36. Goalies – Seattle, Berlin 36 shots-33 saves (7-5-0-1); Regina, Brown 39-34 (9-7-2-0). Power plays – Seattle 2-4; Regina 1-3. A – 6,149. Referees – Adam Griffiths, Nick Swaine. Linesmen – Adam Brastad, Mark Heier.