A bit of old time hockey at the Memorial Coliseum as the Portland Winterhawks knocked off the Kamloops Blazers 6-4 in a game that featured it’s share of chippiness and a near bench brawl at the end of the second period.
The brouhaha at the end of the second period was escalated when Jeff Bosch, the Kamloops netminder took exception to a Portland player shooting the helmet of Dylan Willick, who was just involved with a scrap with Brad Ross at the buzzer, toward the exit door where the Blazers leave the ice. He then skated over to engage with the Hawks and that brought everyone into the corner where the Hawks were attempting to exit the ice to the locker room.
Why he was so upset at the helmet being shot toward the exit door is beyond me…but Bosch paid the price when he squared off with Mac Carruth and the Hawk goaltender laid the hammer down, cutting Bosch with a quick right. Both goaltenders got leaving the crease minors, fighting majors and game misconducts. The leaving the crease minor on Carruth is debatable in my book as he was leaving the ice to head to the locker room when he was challenged by Bosch. It’s not like he skated the length of the ice to get involved…the involvement found him. Again, just the way I saw it.
The other component in the scrum was Shayne Neigum who went after Ross during the fight with Willick but was held at bay and then he put a wicked two hand slash on Troy Rutkowski just before the Bosch episode in the corner.
Joe Morrow and Brendan Ranford went at it, but it wasn’t considered a fight by the officials on the ice. Morrow chased after Ranford after the Kamloops forward slashed Morrow on the way to the scrum. Before it was over, Seth Swenson and J.C. Lipon went in a spirited scrap in the middle of the ice.
In the end, the Hawks wound up with a two minute power play and the Blazers lost one more player when it was deemed that Chase Schaber was ruled to have had contact with one of the linesmen when he was leaving the ice.
I’m sure the league will review the footage and make the call on any possible fines or suspensions that could be handed down but we may not hear about those until Monday.
In game action…Nino Niederreiter continued his hot play as of late, scoring twice to give him five goals in his last four games and the Hawks power play went 3 for 7 on the night, and that proved to be the difference. Ryan Johansen, Taylor Aronson, Ty Rattie and Spencer Bennett each had single markers.
Ranford got his league leading 21st of the season and chipped in two assists for the Blazers.
The Hawks get the Spokane Chiefs Sunday night at the Rose Garden…game time is 5:00.