EVERETT — The Everett Silvertips have seen enough of the Tri-City Americans for the time being.
The Silvertips scored their quickest goal of the year so far, but the Americans shook it off and scored the game’s final four goals to defeat the Tips 4-1 before 3,908 fans Friday at Xfinity Arena.
The Silvertips (4-1-1-0, nine points) were off to their best start in 10 years, but were unable to match the Scotty Munro Trophy-winning 2006-07 squad with five wins in their first six games.
Tri-City (3-3-0-0, six points) won its second game over the Tips in three matchups — all played within a six-day span.
The Americans entered with the league’s fifth-best power-play unit in and converted two of their man advantages while also scoring a short-handed goal.
“In the second period we came out ready to go and put ourselves into lots of power plays and lots of shots, so the difference in the game was special teams,” Everett head coach Kevin Constantine said. “We need to score on one of those first four power plays. We need to score and then we’re fine. You get a lead you’re fine. As soon as they got a power play, boom, it was in our net.”
Michael Rasmussen, a projected first-round pick in next June’s NHL draft, scored both power-play goals and Morgan Geekie had three assists to pace the Americans.
Rasmussen’s second goal came when Geekie’s shot bounced off the right post and into the crease where Rasmussen was able to knock it past Everett goalie Carter Hart to put the Americans up 4-1 at 15:00 in the third.
“Whenever a team scores two power-play goals on you it kind of kills the momentum of the other team,” Everett forward Matt Fonteyne said. “We need to work on that going forward.”
That was Tri-City’s second goal of the period. Maxwell James had pushed the lead to 3-1 at 4:27 in the third with a short-handed goal as he sniped a wrister past Hart from the right circle.
“They came down and shot from a fairly bad angle,” Constantine said. “That’s probably one Hart would want to have back the most. I don’t think that’s a huge power-play mistake.”
Rasmussen broke a 1-1 deadlock on the power play at 13:31 in the second. He set up at the right post and Geekie found him across the slot and Rasmussen knocked the puck into a wide-open net as the puck eluded Hart’s blocker.
“We came into the year with limited experience on the penalty kill and we’re trying to find some extra guys to kill,” Constantine said. “So that part of it is a work in progress. But the guys that got scored on tonight were regular killers who have been doing it a long time, so on the kill side that’s disappointing. We had regular killers out there.”
Dominic Zwerger scored Everett’s earliest goal of the season thus far on the game’s first shift off the rush. Linemate Fonteyne’s shot bounced off the boards behind the goal to the crashing Zwerger, who knocked it in for a 1-0 lead with just 30 seconds elapsed in the opening period.
The Americans drew even less than a minute later. Dakota Krebs fired a shot from the right circle that snuck through traffic. Everett defenseman Wyatte Wylie tried to clear it, but ended up knocking the puck into his own net at 1:18 in the first to tie the game at 1-1.
“We missed blocking a shot at the point,” Constantine said. “That’s why we block shots — so they don’t get near our net.”
Hart finished with 23 saves on 27 shots. Sanders finished with 29 saves on 30 shots.
The Silvertips play at Prince George next Tuesday and Wednesday.
Americans 4, Silvertips 1
Tri-City 1 1 2 — 4
Everett 1 0 0 — 1
1st Period—1, Everett, Zwerger 2 (Fonteyne, Bajkov), 0:30. 2, Tri-City, Krebs 1 (AuCoin, Geekie), 1:18. Penalties—No Penalties
2nd Period—3, Tri-City, Rasmussen 7 (Geekie, Sandhu), 13:31 (PP). Penalties—Rasmussen Tc (cross checking), 0:23; James Tc (interference), 4:21; Dwyer Evt (holding), 13:07.
3rd Period—4, Tri-City, James 2 4:27 (SH). 5, Tri-City, Rasmussen 8 (Geekie, Wotherspoon), 15:00 (PP). Penalties—Yorke Tc (roughing), 3:31; served by Jeri-Leon Tc (too many men), 9:01; Dwyer Evt (tripping), 14:48; Rasmussen Tc (roughing), 15:00; Sandhu Tc (roughing), 15:00; Juulsen Evt (roughing), 15:00; Dewar Evt (cross checking), 16:40; Wotherspoon Tc (instigator, major-fighting, game misconduct), 20:00; Richards Evt (major-fighting), 20:00.
Shots on Goal—Tri-City 10-10-7-27. Everett 9-13-8-30.
Power Play Opportunities—Tri-City 2 / 3; Everett 0 / 6.
Goalies—Tri-City, Sanders 1-1-0-0 (30 shots-29 saves). Everett, Hart 2-1-1-0 (27 shots-23 saves).
For the latest Silvertips news follow Jesse Geleynse on Twitter @jessegeleynse.