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Winterhawks build lead, win 6th in a row



Portland Winterhawks 5, MEDICINE HAT TIGERS 3


Wednesday night, Medicine Hat Arena, Medicine Hat, Alberta, 4,006 (sellout)


The Hawks built a 4-1 lead with three straight goals in the second period, but finished the frame on top only 4-3. Neither team scored in the third period until Brendan Leipsic hit an empty net with 53 seconds remaining.


The Hawks have a six-game winning streak and are 3-0 in their stretch of five consecutive road games.


• Nic Petan, Chase De Leo and Leipsic each had a goal and an assist for Portland.

Petan leads the Winterhawks in scoring (26 points in 13 games) and assists (18). De Leo and Leier each have 15 points to rank third in team scoring behind Petan and Oliver Bjorkstrand (13-11—24).

• Brendan Burke pushed his season record to 9-2-0-1, making 40 saves — including all 14 that came his way in the final period.

• Medicine Hat goalie Marek Langhamer, who had 30 stops, denied Alex Schoenborn on a penalty shot early in the second period during the outburst that had captain Taylor Leier scoring at 5:14, De Leo striking at 8:16 and Keegan Iverson connecting at 12:21.


• Penalty kill: Portland 4 for 4, Medicine Hat 1 for 1


Portland center De Leo, on letting up goals after the Winterhawks go in front: “I think that is the biggest thing that as a group we need to work on. Even when we do get a lead, we have to battle like we are down goals.

We just have to keep it going strong, even when we are up.”


Portland 9-3-1-0 (19 points)

Medicine Hat 7-3-2-0 (16)


The Hawks climbed into a tie for third place in the WHL Western Conference:

Spokane 10-3-0-0 (20)

Victoria 9-6-0-0 (18)

Portland 9-3-0-1 (19)

Seattle 9-3-0-1(19)

Everett 8-2-2-0 (18)

Kelowna 7-2-0-2 (16)

Prince George 6-7-0-1 (13)

Tri-City 6-8-0-1 (13)

Vancouver 3-7-1-1 (8)

Kamloops 4-9-0-0 (8)


The Winterhawks play at the Kootenay Ice, 6 p.m. PT Friday (KPAM 860 AM), at Cranbrook, British Columbia

Kootenay is tied for fifth in the Western Hockey League Eastern Conference with a record of 6-5-2-0 (14 points).