Silvertips on the verge of elimination
Everett finds itself in a must-win situation as far as the playoffs are concerned after falling 4-1 to the Tri-City Americans on Friday night.
Everett plays Seattle tonight in Kent in its regular-season finale. Since Seattle beat Spokane 4-3 Friday, the teams go into tonight tied for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Hockey League's Western Conference.
Seattle has another game Sunday in Portland, so the Tips not only have to win at Seattle, they have to wait for Sunday's result to know if they're in. If the teams finish tied for eighth, the team that advances to the postseason will be determined by a one-game playoff.
The Tips nearly held onto their eighth-place position Friday as Reid Petryk's third-period goal knotted the score 1-1. However, Everett couldn't hold on for a point as Tri-City scored three goals in the final five minutes to win.
Adam Hughesman scored twice during that late flurry to lead Tri-City (50-17-2-2), which remains in the hunt for the Scotty Munro Trophy for the league's best record. Jordan Messier and Zach Yuen also scored for the Americans. Ty Rimmer was strong in goal with 30 saves.
Kent Simpson made 35 saves in goal for Everett (21-40-2-8), which can no longer finish seventh. Victoria beat Portland 3-1 Friday, meaning only Victoria or Seattle can finish seventh.
Everett trailed 1-0 going into the third period, but the Tips ramped up the pressure. Rimmer made several big saves before Everett finally found the net, Petryk scoring right after a faceoff win to make it 1-1 with 6 minutes, 17 seconds remaining.
But Tri-City came right back. Just 1:52 later, Yuen restored the Americans' lead, converting a feed from former Silvertip Jesse Mychan to make it 2-1.
Then Hughesman put it away. He redirected a centering feed at 17:52 to give Tri-City a two-goal lead, then scored into an empty net with 40 seconds remaining.
The game remained 0-0 through one period. Each team had one excellent scoring chance, but the goaltenders came up with the saves to keep it scoreless.
Both teams hit the post in the second period before the Americans found the breakthrough at 14:32, Messier redirecting a centering feed over Simpson's shoulder to make it 1-0.
Everett twice got players behind the defense toward the end of the second, but Rimmer made saves on both Josh Winquist and Jari Erricson to preserve Tri-City's lead.
Americans 4, Silvertips 1
Everett 0 0 1--1
Tri-City 0 1 3--4
First Period--no goals. Penalties--Yadlowski, Everett (slashing), 1:28; Dow, Tri-City (checking to the head), 8:21.
Second Period--1, Tri-City, J. Messier 18 (Hughesman, Feser), 14:32. Penalties--Caron, Everett (tripping), 5:43; Grayson, Everett (high sticking), 15:48.
Third Period--2, Everett, Petryk 18 (Winquist), 13:43. 3, Tri-City, Yuen 12 (Mychan, Feser), 15:35. 4, Tri-City, Hughesman 49 (Shinnimin, Holland), 17:52. 5, Tri-City, Hughesman 50 (Shinnimin), 19:20 (en). Penalties--none.
Shots on goal--Everett 6-8-17--31. Tri-City 12-16-11--39. Power-play opportunities--Everett 0 of 1. Tri-City 0 of 3.
Goalies--Everett, Simpson 19-31-2-5 (38 shots, 35 saves). Tri-City, Rimmer 31-11-1-1 (31 shots, 30 saves).
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