Everett completed the first half of the WHL season by defeating the Portland Winterhawks 4-2 Tuesday night.
The Tips were looking at the prospect of finding nothing but coal in their stockings during the Christmas break, having lost four straight and six of seven going into Tuesday. But Joshua Winquist scored twice as Everett not only ended a four-game skid, but ended a 16-game regular-season losing streak in Portland dating back to Jan. 22, 2010 -- though the Tips had won playoff games in Portland.
Jujhar Khaira and Carson Stadnyk scored the other goals for Everett (22-10-4-0), which heads into the nine-day break in second place in the U.S. Division, just two points behind Portland.
Chase De Leo and Paul Bittner scored for Portland (23-8-2-2), which was playing severely short-handed, with five of its top six scorers unavailable. No. 1 defenseman Derrick Pouliot and top-three scorers Nicolas Petan, Oliver Bjorkstrand and Taylor Leier were away at the World Junior Hockey Championships. In addition, star winger Brendan Leipsic was serving the first game of a seven-game suspension for a checking-to-the-head major penalty taken Saturday in a 5-3 victory over Seattle.
Everett was also short as the Tips dressed just 19 players. Defenseman Mirco Mueller is at World Juniors, while forwards Manraj Hayer and Patrick Bajkov and defenseman Noah Juulsen were all out with upper-body injuries. Then the Tips lost goaltender Austin Lotz during the game. Lotz had to be attended to late in the first period after taking a knee to the head from Portland's Shane McColgan. Lotz finished the period, but was replaced by Daniel Cotton to begin the second.
Lotz stopped all seven shots he faced. Cotton ended up with the win, saving 13 of 15.
Brendan Burke made 31 saves in net for Portland.
Everett had a heavy power-play advantage early in the first period, and although the Tips didn't convert, they scored shortly after. Everett had an extra skater out for a delayed penalty at 11 minutes, 57 seconds when Ivan Nikolishin centered a pass for Winquist to tap in and give Everett a 1-0 lead. The Tips then made it 2-0 at 17:20. Austin Adam's airborne shot from the point was tipped in by Khaira. The play went to a video review to determine if the puck was hit by a high stick, but the goal was upheld.
Everett should have gone ahead 3-0 midway through the second period, but Kohl Bauml fanned with the net gaping. Then Portland got back within one on the power play at 17:12 as De Leo put a shot through traffic and past Cotton.
The teams traded goals early in the third period, with Stadnyk tipping in Darcy DeRoose's centering feed at 1:31 and Bittner putting a shot into the top corner at 4:39. It remained tight until Winquist scored into an empty net with 1:07 remaining to seal it.
Silvertips 4, Winterhawks 2
Everett 2 0 2 -- 4
Portland 0 1 1 -- 2
First Period--1, Everett, Winquist 25 (Nikolishin, Sandhu), 11:57. 2, Everett, Khaira 8 (Adam, Leedahl), 17:20. Penalties--Low, Everett (cross checking), 1:55; Schoenborn, Portland (interference), 3:18; McColgan, Portland (slashing), 4:18; Gaar, Portland (cross checking), 6:36.
Second Period--3, Portland, De Leo 22 (Haar), 17:12 (pp). Penalties--Low, Everett (slashing), 6:57; Aasman, Everett (fighting-game misconduct), 9:53; Alldridge, Portland (fighting-game misconduct), 9:53; Zipp, Everett (interference), 15:58; Cederholm, Portland (checking to the head), 18:54.
Third Period--4, Everett, Stadnyk 10 (DeRoose, Low), 1:31. 5, Portland, Bittner 10 (McColgan), 4:39. 6, Everett, Winquist 26, 18:53 (en). Penalties--Leedahl, Everett (unsportsmanlike conduct), 1:53; McColgan, Portland (unsportsmanlike conduct), 1:53; Schoenborn, Portland (high sticking), 11:55; MacPherson, Portland (high sticking), 19:36; McColgan, Portland (10-minute misconduct), 20:00.
Shots on goal--Everett 16-10-9--35. Portland 7-11-4--22. Power-play opportunities--Everett 0 of 6. Portland 1 of 3.
Goalies--Everett, Lotz (7 shots, 7 saves), Cotton 6-2-3-0 (15 shots, 13 saves). Portland, Burke 20-7-2-2 (34 shots, 31 saves).
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