Game 40: Thunderbirds lose a close battle in Portland

Jan 8, 2011, 9:38 PM | Updated: Apr 6, 2011, 11:23 am

(26-12-0-3)Portland Winterhawks 2,(17-16-3-4)Seattle Thunderbirds 1

Toomey with a goal…Pickard makes 42 saves

PORTLAND– It was another hard fought game against the Winterhawks for the Thunderbirds but they end up losing their first game in regulation time this season to the Hawks.

Portland went on the power play at the 3:12 mark of the first period when Erik Bonsor was called for Elbowing. They did not convert.

The Birds went on the power play at 8:59. Mac Carruth (17-9-0-1) was called for Roughing. They did not convert while getting two shots on net.

Seattle went back on the power play at 14:57 when Brad Ross was called for Roughing. The power play was wiped out 18 seconds in as Charles Wells was called for Slashing.

The Hawks Craig Cunningham (14) scored to put them up 1-0. It was a power play goal scored at 17:11.

After 20 minutes the Winterhawks were up 1-0. Shots were 13-8 in favor of Portland.

Portland went on the power play at 1:53 of the second period. Travis Bobbee went to the box for Roughing. They didn’t convert.

The Birds got a power play chance at 5:04 when Ryan Johansen was called for Hooking. They got one shot on net.

Sven Bartschi put the Hawks up 2-0 at 11:25. It was his 22nd goal of the season. Bartschi was left all alone just to the left of Calvin Pickard (17-14-2-4) and knocked in a rebound. “It was a pretty good bounce situation,” said Rob Sumner. “They certainly worked hard for sure, but they got a nice bounce there.”

Nino Niederreiter went to the box for High Sticking at 16:34. The power play was negated with 56 seconds left in the advantage when Marcel Noebels was called for Slashing.

After two periods the Hawks were up 2-0. Shots in the second period were 17-7 in favor of Portland who also led 29-16 in shots overall.

The Birds went on the power play at 5:26 of the third period when Oliver Gabriel was called for Roughing and was also given a 10 minute misconduct. They did not convert and were 0 for 5 on the power play.

At 8:27 the teams skated four on four when Jacob Doty was called for Cross Checking and Brett Ponich for Roughing.

Portland got a power play opportunity when Wells was called for Tripping at 11:22. They didn’t convert.

Seattle went back to the power play at 13:58 as Niederreiter went to the box for Interference. The Birds got on the board when Travis Toomey scored his 10th goal of the season at 14:50. Assists were from Bobbee and Wells.

With 1:20 left in the third, Pickard was pulled for the extra attacker.

The Birds put on some pressure but couldn’t get the tying goal as they lost to Portland 2-1.

Shots in the third period were 13-13. Overall the Hawks out shot the Birds 44-29.

As has been the case this season the Birds played a very competitive game against the Winterhawks and this time Portland had all of their weapons while the Birds were missing Luke Lockhart. Sumner was fairly pleased with the effort. “I thought we played a very aggressive and a good tight defensive game in the first period. In the second period we left them a little more space, our gap was a little bigger which caused us more time in our own end. In the third period we got back on track. Overall I thought our performance was strong in several areas.”

The Hawks are a very dangerous offensive team and Sumner was asked about their impressive roster and what the Birds plan is against them. “It’s a team defense situation. They are good down low, and good off the rush. Power play wise they are good as well. We just try to put more emphasis on our D zone and our coverage. We just try to keep their chances down.”

The Birds will play three games in three days for the first time since opening weekend. “It’s a busy and critical part of the schedule. We’re going to have a plan to be tight defensively again,” said Sumner. “Really short shifts. They are there waiting for us just like Portland was, and we’re going to try to play well there too.”

Sunday’s game in Chilliwack will begin at 5 pm with the pre-game starting at 4:35. It can be heard at MyNorhwest.com.

Game Notes:

– F Luke Lockhart was out of the game due to an upper body injury.

– The Thunderbirds road record drops to 11-8-2-2.

– Seattle is now 7-10-0-3 against the U.S. Division.

– The Birds were 1 for 6 on the power play. Portland was 1 for 5.

Game Summary:

1st Period-1, Portland, Cunningham 14 (Ross, Gabriel), 17:11 (PP). Penalties-Bonsor Sea (elbowing), 3:12; Carruth Por (roughing), 8:59; Ross Por (roughing), 14:57; Wells Sea (slashing), 15:15.

2nd Period-2, Portland, Bartschi 22 (Johansen, Rattie), 11:25. Penalties-Bobbee Sea (roughing), 1:53; Johansen Por (hooking), 5:04; Niederreiter Por (high sticking), 16:31; Noebels Sea (slashing), 17:35.

3rd Period-3, Seattle, Toomey 10 (Bobbee, Wells), 14:50 (PP). Penalties-Gabriel Por (roughing, 10-minute misconduct), 5:26; Doty Sea (cross checking), 8:27; Ponich Por (roughing), 8:27; Wells Sea (tripping), 11:22; Niederreiter Por (interference), 13:58.

Shots on Goal-Seattle 8-8-13-29. Portland 13-16-15-44.

Power Play Opportunities-Seattle 1 / 6; Portland 1 / 5.

Goalies-Seattle, Pickard 17-13-2-4 (44 shots-42 saves). Portland, Carruth 16-9-0-1 (29 shots-28 saves).

A-10,288

Referees-Sean Raphael (28), Colby Smith (57).

Linesmen-Justin Hull (49), Chris Sweeting (137).

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Game 40: Thunderbirds lose a close battle in Portland