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Portland Winterhawks Win Three in a Row

Wednesday, November 18, 2015


After devastating losses against the Kelowna Rockets, Adin Hill had little time to reflect as he was tapped to play in the Super Series with Canada vs Russia. Adin played the second half of a lopsided 7-3 win for Team WHL in Kelowna, and then played a 60 minute stellar effort in a 4-2 win in Kamloops for Team WHL the following night. With his being in Kamloops and being unable to play in the Winterhawks next game, Michael Bullion was pressed into service for Portland. The team headed to Kennewick for a battle with US Division rivals Tri-City Americans, a team that had been hammered in their last game 8-1 by Spokane. The Hawks, sensing vulnerability in the Americans, flew with everything they had and using their first three shots of the game, scored on each opportunity. Tri-City made a few attempts to make a comeback, but in the end, Michael Bullion was able to secure a 6-2 victory for the Hawks. Rihard Bukarts addition to the team has paid dividends since his arrival and seems to have rubbed off on everyone else as all four lines that rolled during the game for the Hawks, figured into the scoring.

Adin Hill returned between the pipes for Portland as he faced an always tough Swift Current Broncos team in Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Unlike the Tri-City game, it was Swift Current who built a lead early, piling up a 3-0 lead before Portland saw the scoreboard. Jon Martin, the Broncos’ leading scorer, had two goals and an assist in the game. With Swift Current leading 3-1 going into the second period, it was almost like a flash went off in front of the Winterhawks as they piled on 4 goals very quickly, including a power play and short-handed goal which gave them a 5-3 lead. Swift Current replaced starter Landon Bow with Travis Childs, who would stop Portland the rest of the way. Swift Current would get one back in the third period, but Portland managed to hang on and won by a 5-4 score. Keegan Iverson scored twice, with Bukarts, Overhardt and McKenzie adding single markers. Portland went 1 for 6 on the power play, with Swift Current being blanked on 3 opportunities and giving up the short-handed goal.

The Hawks boarded a bus right after the game and headed north for a game against the Vancouver Giants. The Giants have been a hit and miss team with strong wins and brutal losses and had just come off a hard fought overtime win at home. Portland seemed to draw the ire of referee Steve Papp, the only referee assigned to the game. Portland found themselves in revolving penalty trouble including a pair of 5-on-3 attempts which assisted in Vancouver jumping out to a 2-0 lead. However, despite what seemed to be slanted officiating, the Hawks took adversity by the horns and battled back strong. In fact, the Hawks hadn't really made any concentrated attack until they were free of the penalties and that would be after the ten minute mark of the first period. When they did come back, the intensity was as strong as one has ever seen. Alex Overhardt was the first to crack the twine 13 minutes in, followed by Rodrigo Abols just over a minute later. Barely into the second period, Portland was now up by two with Keegan Iverson and Brett Clayton scoring unassisted goals just over a minute apart. That chased Vancouver starter Daniel Wapple from the net.  Ty Ronning answered by for Vancouver midway through the second, by the door was shut by Alex Schoenborn just 5 minutes into the third. Portland was unable to convert any of the 5 power plays they had, while Vancouver was 2 for 4. 

With the wins, Portland sits just 5 points out of first place in the US Division with a 10-9-0-0 record. The Winterhawks now take the week off, returning to play the Tri-City Americans at home on Friday, followed by a trip to ShoWare Center for just their second game against the division leading Seattle Thunderbirds. Portland will play just twice more this month with games against Moose Jaw in a midweek game and a special Daylight Classic game versus the Vancouver Giants on November 28.

Ice Chips:  The Burgerville Daylight Classic Game at Veterans Memorial Coliseum will start at 3pm and also be known as "Keeping Portland Warm Night". Fans are encouraged to bring to the game new and gently used blankets, sleeping bags, sweaters and new socks among other "warm" items for donation to the Portland Police Bureau Sunshine Division. Last season, fans donated enough items to fill over 8 barrels! Meet and Greet with Cody Glass, Rodrigo Abols, Caleb Jones and Brendan De Jong at Burgerville on Hawthorne Boulevard on Monday, November 23 from 5:30 to 7:30pm. 

GoLocalPDX partner Oregon Sports News: Since 2011, Oregon Sports News has provided entertaining, hard-hitting local sports news & commentary every weekday. To read more from this author, check out Oregon Sports News by clicking here.


Related Slideshow: 12 of the Greatest Sports Movies of All Time

Hank Stern ranks his top twelve favorite sports films. 

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#12 Rollerball

Some of the non-athletic scenes in this dystopian classic show their age, but Rollerball is a strangely prescient film that anticipated both the corporatization of sport and fans’ limitless taste for violence. Bonus points for the ominous intro music.

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#11 A League of Their Own

A comedy that looks back to the antithesis of corporate sport – a women’s baseball league during World War II with many memorable lines to choose from (e.g.,”There’s no crying in baseball.”)

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#10 Remember The Titans

Yes, filmmakers took liberties with some of the facts dealing with the integration of a high school football team in Virginia. But there’s a reason football teams often screen this film on the eve of big games. It’s a damn inspirational tale.

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#9 The Natural

This film has grown on me over time. Originally, it seemed slow and schmaltzy. Now, it seems well-paced and charming. Then and now, the re-created scenes of pre-World War II ballparks arrive like perfectly preserved postcards from the past.  

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#8 The Longest Yard

Not the remake with Adam Sandler and Chris Rock. But the hilarious original with Burt Reynolds and Eddie Albert as a wonderfully villainous warden who pits the guards against the inmates in a grudge football game that includes former Green Bay linebacker Ray Nitschke and other ex-football players like Sonny Sixkiller and Joe Kapp, both stalwart Pac-8 quarterbacks long, long ago.  

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#7 Slap Shot

The Hanson brothers. Enough said.

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#6 Rocky

Often imitated, but never replicated. The definitive underdog boxing story featuring Sylvester Stallone before he became a self-caricature in multiple sequels. Impossible to hear the theme song without being motivated to get off the couch.

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#5 Seabiscuit

A fantastic book as well as a great movie. Like “The Natural,” Seabiscuit captures its Depression-era setting for modern-day viewers taken back to an era when horse racing actually meant something in America. 

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#4 Requiem for a Heavywei

A too often-forgotten film these days but a wonderful boxing drama that shows the sport’s underside with memorable  performances by Mickey Rooney, Jackie Gleason and Anthony Quinn.

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#3 Hoosiers

Want to know something about small-town America in the 1950s and about Indiana basketball? This hoops movie does all of that with a healthy dose of redemption throughout. 

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#2 Bull Durham

There’s a pretty good case to be made this movie played a huge part in the rebirth and re-marketing of minor league baseball. As written by former minor leaguer Ron Shelton, there are many great scenes to choose from but this one is a favorite. 

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#1 Raging Bull

A rags-to-riches-to-rags story of boxer Jake LaMotta meets the actor born to play him, Robert De Niro. Not a false moment in this black-and-white powerhouse.


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