The Kamloops Blazers gave up the last five goals in a 5-2 loss to the Winterhawks in Portland on Wednesday evening.
The loss snapped the Blazers’ three-game winning streak. They are scheduled to return to Kamloops for a Friday game with the Spokane Chiefs, before heading back south for a Saturday game with the Silvertips in Everett.
The Winterhawks went into the game having not allowed a goal over their last three games, but Kamloops’ Dylan Willick took care of that with 5:44 remaining in the first period. The goal, which was followed closely by a Colin Smith power-play marker that made it 2-0, snapped the Winterhawks’ shutout streak at 194 minutes 16 seconds.
That was as good as it got for the Blazers, who allowed Ty Rattie and Joe Mahon to score goals 34 seconds apart in the second period.
Portland kept pouring it on in the third period, with Nic Petan putting the Winterhawks ahead 5:20 into the frame, and Taylor Peters scoring a shorthanded goal 10 minutes later to put the game on ice. Brendan Leipsic scored into the empty net with 53 seconds remaining.
Portland (41-7-3) stretched its lead atop of the WHL and the Western Conference with the victory. Kamloops (33-15-5) remains third in the conference, behind Portland and the idle Kelowna Rockets (37-10-4).
JUST NOTES: Cole Cheveldave made 33 saves in the loss. Mac Carruth stopped 22 for Portland. . . . Kamloops D Joel Edmundson was ejected with 3:06 remaining in the first period after he was assessed a major penalty for checking to the head. . . . Leipsic and Seth Jones, who is considered a top prospect heading into the NHL draft, each had two assists in the victory. . . . Kamloops was 1-for-6 on the power play, while Portland was 0-for-4. . . . Carruth had the first of the Winterhawks’ three straight shutouts, with Brendan Burke posting the last two.