KENNEWICK – The Spokane Chiefs dominated the first two periods and then withstood a furious Tri-City rally in the final stanza to hold on for a 3-2 Western Hockey League victory over the Americans on Saturday.
With the victory, the Chiefs (10-5-0-0) pulled into a first-place tie with the Americans (9-5-1-1) in the U.S. Division.
Spokane took a 1-0 lead at the 15:34 mark of the first period on Jackson Playfair’s first career goal. Tyler King and Mike Aviani assisted on the scored.
The Chiefs stretched the lead to 2-0 on Aviani’s power-play goal at 18:36 in the first. Jason Fram picked up an assist on Aviani’s eighth netter of the season.
Todd Fiddler’s eighth goal of the campaign was unassisted at the 8:11 mark of the second period and upped Spokane’s advantage to 3-0.
Tri-City got on the scoreboard at 4:53 in the third when Marcus Messier buried a shot with assists from Lucas Nickles and Drydn Dow. The Americans pulled within 3-2 on Malte Stromwall’s goal with 1:07 left in the match.
Goalie Eric Williams stopped 35 of 37 shots on the night for Spokane, including 16 in the final period when the Chiefs were outshot 18-2.
Spokane hosts Seattle on Tuesday night at 7:05 to kick off a season-long six-game homestand.
Kyle Davis’ third-period goal gave the Spokane Braves (5-10-1-0) a 1-0 win over the Columbia Valley Rockies (6-10-0-1) at Eagles Ice-A-Rena. The Braves’ Matt Zenzola had 27 saves.
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