It’s hard to believe that the Portland Winterhawks have played out their 2009-10 regular season home schedule, but they have, and they went out in style, knocking off the Everett Silvertips 3-0 last night at the MC.
The Hawks finish their home record at 21-12-2-1 and in an odd statistical anomaly, the Hawks never won more than two in a row at home all season, but they did have 10 two game winning streaks.
Spencer Bennett tied his career best with a three point night and Mac Carruth stopped all 26 shots he faced to earn his first career WHL shutout to lead Portland to the win.
Everett came out of the game firing, getting 10 of the first 12 shots on net, but Portland killed off a couple power plays against and took over from there, dominating in all zones and out shooting Everett 38-16 the rest of the way.
Bennett’s line with Riley Boychuk and Ty Rattie have been very good since being put back together late in the game on Friday night against Spokane and they were the Hawks best line on Tuesday. Rattie got the Hawks started off a nice set up by Boychuk and Bennett and the Hawks didn’t look back with eight minutes remaining in the opening period.
Bennett banged home a power play goal and then set up Luca Sbisa to make it 3-0 early in the third and the only thing remaining to secure was Carruth’s shutout. The two teams went through an incredible 10 minute stretch when there were no whistles as the Hawks methodically and efficiently kept Everett at bay with a stong forecheck and really good backchecking in the defensive zone.
Carruth has now gone 11-4-0-1 in his last 16 decisions after starting his WHL career at 1-5-0-0.
By hitting 40 shots, the Hawks have hit at least 40 shots on 23 different occasions so far in 2009-10 with two games remaining against Chilliwack on Friday and Seattle and Saturday. In those games, the Hawks went 18-4-1-0.
And, lastly, with the win the Hawks have now have set a new team record for biggest year-to-year turnaround, having garnered 44 more points than last season and they have two games remaining to add to that total.
That’s it for now…
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