Sunday, January 25, 2015

Kootenay 7 Prince George 4

From Chris Wahl ...
Four second-period goals paced the Kootenay ICE to a 7-4 triumph over the Prince George Cougars Sunday at Western Financial Place.

Forward Austin Wellsby's first career Western Hockey League goal stood up as the game-winner, while goaltender Keelan Williams made 26 saves to earn his first victory in the WHL.

The Cougars opened the scoring 54 seconds into the first period after a miscue in the ICE zone resulted in an own goal, but Kootenay quickly countered, as forward Tim Bozon ripped a one-timer past gnetminder Tavin Grant three and a half minutes later to level the score.

The ICE took a 2-1 lead at 8:26 of the opening frame after Levi Cable jammed home a rebound, but Prince George would equalize before the intermission through Chase Witala, who tucked in his 26th goal of the season on a late power-play.

Kootenay broke the game open in the second period with three unanswered goals, the first of which found Zak Zborosky alone at Grant's back post at 5:55 after a tic-tac-toe passing play with linemates Sam Reinhart and Bozon.

Jaedon Descheneau doubled the ICE lead to 4-2 just under six minutes later with a shot that snuck through the Cougar netminder. Kootenay extended the lead less than a minute later as Wellsby deflected a point shot that shattered blueliner Tyler King's stick.

Prince George defenseman Josh Connolly and Cable exchanged goals in the final five minutes of the second period as the hosts took a 6-3 lead to the intermission.

Bozon tallied his second goal of the game on an ICE power play 2:37 into the third period, finishing off a two-man breakaway with Descheneau from just outside the crease.

Jansen Harkins rounded out the scoring for the Cougars with a quick snapshot from the slot with 49 seconds remaining in regulation time.

Bozon, Descheneau and Luke Philp each finished the contests with three points for Kootenay, while Reinhart and Cable also enjoyed multi-point games.

ICE defenseman Tanner Lishchynsky, playing in his first game against his former club, recorded an assist and was a plus-three.

Harkins and Connolly both had three points for Prince George. Grant made 33 saves in goal for the Cougars.

UP NEXT: the ICE visit Lethbridge Wednesday before opening a seven-game home stand Friday versus the Regina Pats.