Friday, March 27, 2015

Kootenay 4 Calgary 3 Game 1

From Chris Wahl ...
Luke Philp scored twice, and Jaedon Descheneau's short-handed marker midway through the third period proved decisive as the Kootenay ICE defeated the Calgary Hitmen 4-3 Friday at Scotiabank Saddledome.

Philp led all scorers with three points as the ICE claimed a 1-0 series lead in their Eastern Conference Quarter-Final.

Kootenay opened the scoring 7:14 into the game when, after a turnover in the neutral zone, Philp put home Descheneau's rebound in front of Calgary netminder Brendan Burke.

Defenseman Tyler King extended the ICE lead seven minutes later with a hard point shot on a Kootenay power-play.

The Hitmen found the scoreboard before the first period expired on a man-advantage of their own through rookie blueliner Jake Bean. Calgary then tied the game 2-2 at the 4:23 mark of period two when Kenton Helgesen finished a rush by linemate Radel Fazleev, back-handing a shot past ICE goaltender Wyatt Hoflin.

Philp restored the Kootenay lead late in period two, converting on a one-timer after being set up from behind the Hitmen goal by Matt Alfaro.

Calgary outshot the ICE 11-5 in the third period, but Kootenay extended its lead to 4-2 at 9:57 on a short-handed odd-man rush. Forward Austin Vetterl fed Descheneau, who one-timed his first goal of the playoffs past Burke.

Connor Rankin cut the ICE lead to 4-3 with 6:53 to play, but Hoflin turned aside every shot he faced thereafter to preserve the Kootenay victory.

Hoflin made 29 saves Friday, while Burke stopped 27 shots.

Kootenay went 1-3 on the power-play, while Calgary was 1-4.

Descheneau's goal was his fifth career playoff game-winning goal, and fourth against the Hitmen.

Vetterl chipped in with two assists for the ICE.

UP NEXT: the ICE and Hitmen play Game Two of the Eastern Conference Quarter-Final Sunday in Calgary. Game time is 4:00 pm. Games Three and Four will take place at Western Financial Place Tuesday, March 31 and Wednesday, April 1.