Vancouver Giants got a valuable point in the season opener and fans got a taste of a shootout after not seeing one all last season, but Seattle Thunderbirds scored twice in the shootout to win it Friday, Sept. 23 at Langley Events Centre.
Giants got off to a slow start in the first period before a hometown audience at Langley Events Centre, but came storming back to force a tie and send the game into overtime.
In the first period, Seattle rookie Gracyn Sawchyn scored 7:55 into his WHL debut to open the scoring.
Just four minutes later, Thunderbirds player Brayden Dube grabbed the puck in the neutral zone and ripped it shortside to double the Seattle lead.
Giants’ Ethan Semeniuk got the G-Men on the board before the end of the opening frame.
In the second period, Mazden Leslie buried a point shot on the Giants’ first power play of the night, with 2:12 remaining in the second period to tie the score 2-2.
On the next shift, Nico Myatovic restored the lead for the Thunderbirds, 3-2.
In the third period, Ty Thorpe stuffed in a rebound for the second power play goal for the Giants with 7:32 remaining to tie it.
Five minute of 3-on-3 overtime solved nothing as Seattle killed off a Vancouver 4-on-3 man advantage to force the game to the shootout.
Seattle’s Kyle Crnkovic and Vancouver’s Samuel Honzek traded goals after the Giants first shooter was stopped by T-Birds goalie Scott Ratzlaff.
That set up Sawchyn’s game winner.
Final Score: Seattle 4 — Vancouver 3.
Vancouver ended the night two for three with the power play while Seattle was held scoreless on three power play chances.
The win was Seattle’s third straight road win over the Giants, after winning both games in Langley last season. It was also the Thunderbirds seventh straight regular season road win against the B.C. Division.
Next, Giants head south to play Everett Silvertips Saturday night at Angel of the Winds Arena for a rematch of Round 1 of the playoffs this past spring. Puck drops 6:05 p.m.
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