KENT — It’s just never easy for the Everett Silvertips at the ShoWare Center.
The Tips twice blew a two-goal lead, but Bryce Kindopp bailed Everett out in overtime when he drove to the net and potted the game-winner past Liam Hughes for a 4-3 victory before 5,409 fans at the ShoWare Center.
“It feels really good,” said Kindopp, whose game-winner was his 17th goal of the season. “It’s been a while since we’ve won (here) and the boys really wanted to win tonight coming into our rink (Saturday). We started off on the right foot and we’re really happy tonight.”
The U.S. Division-leading Silvertips (37-17-2-2, 78 points) had lost 11 regular and postseason games at the ShoWare Center dating back to Game 1 of the 2016 Western Conference semifinals.
Seattle (27-20-7-2, 63 points) overcame deficits of 2-0 and 3-1 with a pair of third-period goals to force overtime. Nolan Volcan rang one off the post for Seattle in the extra session before Kindopp’s game-winner at 1:56.
“I think it was more of a psyche thing for the guys,” Everett head coach Dennis Williams said. “I’m just more happy that we didn’t quit. It’s easy to do that in a building like this when the momentum shifted in the third and they scored that third goal to tie it up.”
It was Everett goalie Carter Hart’s 108th career victory as he moved past Leland Irving for the top spot in franchise history.
Garrett Pilon scored twice, Kevin Davis had a goal and an assist and Riley Sutter had a pair of assists to lead the Tips. Hart finished with 30 saves as Everett outshot Seattle 42-33.
“It was a great hockey game to be a part of – it was intense,” Williams said. “It was a playoff (type of) game and I was proud of our guys, the way they battled, the way they stuck up for each other and competed.”
Austin Strand and Turner Ottenbreit each had a goal and an assist for Seattle. They both scored in the third period to turn a 3-1 deficit into a tie game.
The Tips entered the third with 1:46 remaining on a five-minute major penalty. Strand drew the T-birds within a goal at 3-2 with his one-timer from the left circle at 1:12 in the third — 34 seconds before the power play expired.
Then Ottenbreit tied it 3-3 with a wrister from the slot at 10:06.
That’s how it stayed through the remainder of the third to force overtime.
“Most teams are pretty well-rehearsed in how they’re playing (in overtime) and a lot of times you get an opportunity off of a missed net,” Williams said. “Someone goes down on one of those two-on-one misses, and then it’s two-on-one the other way and you get into that ping pong match. I liked our overtime. I thought we did a good job at the start with Ottenbreit and Strand out there.”
Kindopp possessed the puck for about 15 seconds as he kept circling and looking for an opening or an outlet. Seeing none, he skated across the crease and stuck the puck inside the left post.
“In overtime you have to be patient,” Kindopp said. “(Seattle’s defenseman) kind of pinned me and I was able to squeeze away from it and then I just took it to the net.”
Everett led 2-1 through one. The Tips pushed their lead back to two when Pilon went hard to the net and tapped a rebound past Hughes for his second goal of the night at 2:57 in the second.
“It’s tough to do that,” Williams said. “They have big, strong defensemen and you can see that, especially on things like their power play and rebounds, they do a good job of making contact and getting the separation and pushing us off pucks. We have to continue to have the tenacity to get on those loose pucks.”
The second period was relatively uneventful until 16:46. Everett’s Sean Richards checked Seattle’s Jarret Tyszka high along the end boards and a line brawl broke out.
When the referees restored order, numerous Tips and T-birds were sent to the dressing room early and Richards was issued a five-minute major penalty and a game misconduct for the hit.
Everett opened up a 2-0 lead in the first period.
Pilon sniped a power-play shot past Hughes with Connor Dewar setting the screen to put Everett up 1-0 at 2:35 in the first.
Davis pushed it to 2-0 at 14:10 with a slapshot from the high slot.
Seattle drew within one at 18:59 when Matthew Wedman crashed the net an buried a power-play rebound inside the left post.
Everett finished 1-for-5 on the power play while Seattle was 2-for-2 on the man advantage.
The teams face off again at 7:05 p.m. Saturday at Angel of the Winds Arena.
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Silvertips 4, Thunderbirds 3 (OT)
Everett 2 1 0 1 — 4
Seattle 1 0 2 0 — 3
1st Period—1, Everett, Pilon 27 (Davis, Bajkov), 2:35 (PP). 2, Everett, Davis 8 (Dewar), 14:10. 3, Seattle, Wedman 14 (Volcan, Strand), 18:59 (PP). Penalties—Ottenbreit Sea (roughing), 1:51; Bajkov Evt (roughing), 18:04; Pilon Evt (roughing), 18:59; Ottenbreit Sea (unsportsmanlike cnd.), 18:59; Wedman Sea (roughing), 18:59.
2nd Period—4, Everett, Pilon 28 (Christiansen, Sutter), 2:57. Penalties—Strand Sea (high sticking), 8:56; Christiansen Evt (major-fighting), 16:46; Fonteyne Evt (elbowing), 16:46; Richards Evt (major-check/behind, game misconduct), 16:46; Walker Evt (game misconduct), 16:46; Hamaliuk Sea (game misconduct), 16:46; Lee Sea (roughing, 10-minute misconduct), 16:46; Neuls Sea (major-fighting), 16:46; Philp Sea (game misconduct), 16:46; Tyszka Sea (10-minute misconduct), 16:46.
3rd Period—5, Seattle, Strand 18 (Ottenbreit, Andrusiak), 1:12 (PP). 6, Seattle, Ottenbreit 8 (Neuls), 10:06. Penalties—Volcan Sea (cross checking), 2:53; Wedman Sea (elbowing), 6:20.
OT Period—7, Everett, Kindopp 17 (Sutter, Wylie), 1:56. Penalties-No Penalties
Shots on Goal—Everett 11-13-16-2-42. Seattle 9-12-11-1-33.
Power Play Opportunities—Everett 1 / 5; Seattle 2 / 2.
Goalies—Everett, Hart 23-4-1-2 (33 shots-30 saves). Seattle, Hughes 10-7-4-1 (42 shots-38 saves).