Kevin Davis picked a dramatic time to score his first career WHL goal. The 16-year-old rookie defenseman powered a one-timer from the point into the top corner in overtime to give the Tips the win. Davis has had an outstanding rookie campaign, but the one thing that was missing was his first goal. That wait is now over. Interestingly, Davis seemed reluctant to shoot for much of the game, so it was a tad ironic that he scored the winner.
After the game was over and the Tips were celebrating, a fan put a Staples “Easy” button sign against the glass. Davis was goaded by his teammates into jumping into the button.
I have to say, however, that in my memory it’s just the second most-dramatic first career goal in Tips history. Zach Hamill’s first career goal was also an OT winner. It just happened to be in the playoffs.
My guess is that both teams feel they should have won this one in regulation. Everett played a good possession game tonight and missed a lot of chances in front. Meanwhile, the Giants had the puck in the net in the third period to break the 1-1 tie. But it was immediately waived off by the referee, apparently for being kicked in, and after a ridiculously long video review the no-goal call was upheld.
The victory puts Everett back into sixth place in the Western Conference. Because Vancouver got a point for getting the game into overtime, the Tips were only able to tie the Giants at 64 points. However, Everett would have the tiebreaker based on total wins, and the Tips also have two games in hand.
Lastly, a comment on call-up goaltender Carter Hart. Hart is wearing No. 70, a tribute to the NHL’s Braden Holtby but an odd one for a hockey player. Let’s just say that if he decides that’s his number going forward, I doubt he’s going to have to fight anyone for it.
I have to say the waived-off Vancouver goal midway though the third period. Dominik Volek put in his own rebound on the rush, but it was immediately waived off. They went to a video review, and I can only surmise that the reason for the interminable length of the review is that the video judge thought it should have counted, but didn’t quite have enough evidence to overturn the call on the ice.
First star: Davis. One goal, congrats on the first in the Dub.
Second star: Jared Rathjen, Vancouver. 29 saves, made several good stops late in the game to get it to OT.
Third star: Austin Lotz, Everett. 26 saves, including a highlight-reel spread-eagle robbery of Cain Franson in the second period that maintained a 1-0 Tips lead.
The Herald’s honorable mention: Mirco Mueller, Everett. One assist, played a huge number of quality minutes on defense.