Goalie Roddy Ross made a memorable debut, stopping 34 shots to lead the Seattle Thunderbirds to a 2-1 Western Hockey League win over the Spokane Chiefs in front of 5,052 fans at the accesso ShoWare Center on Tuesday night.
With the T-Birds leading 2-1, Ross stopped the Chiefs’ Jaret Anderson-Dolan on a two-on-one with a break with a blocker save with six minutes left in the game. Ross made a quick right pad save on an Anderson-Dolan chance from the slot with three minutes left.
Spokane pulled goalie Bailey Brkin with 56 seconds left in the game for an extra attacker. The remainder of the game was played in the T-Birds’ end, and Ross made a scramble save, covering the puck with his glove with five seconds left.
Ross (4-0-0-1) signed with the T-Birds on January 1 and his previous four games were all played on the road.
Seattle (17-21-4-1) jumped out to a 1-0 lead 4:07 into the first period. Keltie Jeri-Leon controlled the puck in the neutral zone and then sprung Nolan Volcan on a two-on-one break with Matthew Wedman. Volcan came down the right wing and then feathered the puck over a Spokane defenseman’s stick to Wedman in the left circle. Wedman beat Spokane goalie Bailey Brkin over the blocker short side with a hard wrist shot.
Spokane (24-15-2-3) tied the game 1-1 at 19:44 of the first on a power-play goal by Jake McGrew. Nolan Reid and Filip Kral had the assists.
Both teams had 14 shots on goal in the first period.
Volcan came out strong in the second period and scored 24 seconds in to give the T-Birds a 2-1 lead. Volcan blocked a Spokane clearing attempt just inside the blue line. The puck came to Wedman at the top of the right circle and he backhanded it to Volcan coming into the high slot from the right. Volcan skated to the edge of the left circle and beat Brkin with a hard wrist shot over the glove for his 18th goal of the season.
The T-Birds outshot the Chiefs 12-9 in the second period and led 26-23 in shots after two periods.
Brkin finished with 32 saves on 34 shots.
The T-Birds play the Lethbridge Hurricanes at 7:35 p.m. Friday at the ShoWare Center. They travel to Portland to face the Winterhawks at 6 p.m. Saturday in a game being broadcast on JOEtv (Channel 22/Cable 110). The T-Birds host the Kamloops Blazers on Sunday at accesso ShoWare Center at 5:05 p.m.
Tickets are on sale online on the T-Birds website and at the ShoWare box office.
Fans who purchase the 24-flex ticket package will be able to select any available premium seat for any game, in any ticket combination, during the 2018-19 season.
First period – 1, Seattle, Wedman 18 (Volcan, Jeri-Leon), 4:07. 2, Spokane, McGrew 19 (Reid, Kral), 19:44 (pp). Penalties – Hanas, Spo (holding), 12:17. Carpendale, Sea (kneeing), 18:15.
Second period – 3, Seattle, Volcan 18 (Wedman), :24. Penalties – Carpendale, Sea (major-fighting), 4:51. Leduc, Spo (major-fighting), 4:51. Wedman, Sea (boarding), 17:53.
Third period – No scoring. Penalties – No penalties.
Shots on goal – Seattle 14-12-8 34, Spokane 14-9-12 35. Goalies – Seattle, Ross 35 shots-34 saves (4-0-0-1); Spokane, Brkin 34-32 (17-8-1-1). Power plays – Seattle 0-1; Spokane 1-2. A – 5,052. Referees – Adam Griffiths, Mark Pearce. Linesmen – Mark Heier, Justin Nicol.