Saturday, October 4, 2014

Portland Still Winless as They Fall in Shoot Out to Seattle

Though it was the Hawks most entertaining game so far this season, it did not equate into a "W" and extends their winless season to start the season to 6 games. Seattle contin ued to battle back as they trailed Portland by 1 goal 3 different times in order to send it to Over Time and then the circus.

Portland opened the game with a visible desperation and played their best single period of the season so far, in controlling the play in Seattle's zone for almost all of the period. They out shot the Thunderbirds 13-2 in the period and this is not even really indicative enough of how much they flat out controlled the play. Despite this though, they only led 1-0 at the break and you had to know that this type of play would not hold for the rest of the game. Seattle responded to an assuredly upset Steve Konowalchuk and pushed back to start the second peruiod, finally responding halfway through the period with a deflection off of a point shot to tie the score.

This back and forth continued as Oliver Bjorkstrand scored a rediculous goal off of a deflected entry shot that sent him 1 on 2 into Seattle's zone. Seattle D-man Jerrett Smith pushed him seemingly out of scoring range, but then Oliver uncorked a wicked backhanded wrister that found a spot over Taran Kozun's shoulder. Seattle answered back again when Matthew Barzal won a board battle while on the power play with Portland's Joshua Smith and found Keegan Kolesar in front for the easy goal. Portland would get their 3rd in a similar way with Keegan Iverson sending a nice feed to Paul Bittner in front. Bittner sent it top shelf and most of the home crowd thouight that would win it. Portland was agaijn undone by a deflected shot though as Ryan Gropp was given credit for deflecting an Ethan Bear point shot, though it appeared to go off of Skyler McKenzie to me.

Seattle won the shoot out with scores from Barzal and Donovan Neuls, while the only Portland shooter to find the twine was Dominic Turgeon.

Kozun gets his second win over Portland this seaosn, this time stopping 26 of 29 shots. Burke gets the loss giving up 3 goals on 26 shots.

Portland was 0/5 on the power play, though they were much better at generating chances with the addition of Bjorkstrand. They are now 5/28 on the season (17.9%). Seattle was 1/4 on the night and is now 3/18(16.67%) on the season.

Game Notes:
-Keegan Kolesar is growing to be a Winterhawk killer. He had a very large power play marker in the first matchup of the season, tying the score and he had another one tonight, forcing over time. Kolesar now has 2 points (1 Goal and 1 Assist) in each of the games agaisnt Portland this season.
-Portland continues to be victimized by deflected point shots. Deflections are so difficult on a goalie, especially when your team is killing a penalty and have a large body screening you from a good view. They need to do a better job at paying the price and getting out to block these shots from getting near the net.
-Dominic Turgeon's line (Iverson and Bittner) got the brunt of dealing with Barzal and Ryan Gropp. They need a marvelous job in the second period, not allowing Barzal's limne from getting out of theio own zone but just a few times. This effort was not as great in the last 2 periods though Barzal and Gropp were not as dangerous as they were in the first match up.
-Nick Heid skated a regular shift pairing in the first period with Anton Cederholm but got less and less ice time as the game went on. Though I understand the reasoning as he is error prone at times and is still adjusting to the WHL surface and game, I think a regular shift on Cederholm's right side (on 5 on 5 only) should be his. Forcing Keoni Texeira or Layne Viveiros to skate on the right side seems to create more confusion and mistakes then Heid playing where he is comfortable. Joshua Smith is the other right handed shot and played better for most of this game but lost several important board battles, including the one that led to Kolesar's goal.
-Miles Koules looked solid in his Hawks debut, showing off game breaking. His shoot out try seemed to lack creativity, but I do get why he was given that opportunity. The easiest way to make a guy feel comfortable in a locker rom is making him the hero.
-Alex Schoenborn, though kept off the scoreboard, palyed his best game so far thise season, drawing 2 different minor penlties in the game and most importanly staying out of the penalty box himself.
-Evan Weinger notched his 3rd goal in 2 games on a long shift to open the scoring. He is now slotted down on the 4th line with Alex Overhardt and Ethan Price but his skill on offense has to earn him some more playing time at some point. He even went down to block a point shot in the 2nd period.

3 Stars:
#3 Ethan Bear:
-Bear has to be a first round pick in this coming draft. He has a wicked slap shot and got 3 or 4 through to Burke. It was also his shot that was tipped past Burke to tie the score at 3 lat in the 3rd. He finsihed with 2 assists on the night.

#2 Keegan Kolesar:
-Kolesar had 1 goal and 1 assist on the night and really seems to be a great power forward in the making.

#1 Oliver Bjorkstrand:
-Not just for his highlight reel goal but for the amount of ho hum entry plays that he singlehandedly turned into great scoring opportunities.

No comments:

Post a Comment