WHL: Cougars beat Thunderbirds; Winterhawks blank Rockets

Associated Press

9/29/2012 2:52:17 AM

A mistake by their goaltender seemed to light a spark under the Prince George Cougars.

After Devon Fordyce gave up a weak goal, Prince George stormed back to score three straight times in a 4-3 win over the Seattle Thunderbirds in Western Hockey League action Friday.

Cougars head coach Dean Clark said he liked what he saw when the team bailed out their goaltender in the second period.

"We're a group here and we'll back each other up," said Clark. "It was good to see our guys go out there and do that for (Fordyce) and he held the fort the rest of the way."

Fordyce redeemed himself in the third period by stopping all nine shots he faced. The 18-year-old sophomore faced 33 shots in all to pick up the win in his season debut.

Colin Jacobs had a goal and an assist for Prince George (3-0-0), while Daulton Siwak, Jordan Tkatch and Alex Forsberg also scored.

Justin Hickman, Branden Troock and Evan Wardley scored for the Thunderbirds (1-2-0).

Seattle's Justin Myles made 29 saves in a losing effort.

Prince George went 1-for-4 on the power play while Seattle failed to score on their only opportunity with the man advantage.

Cougars' rookie Marc McNulty left the game early with an "upper-body injury."

Elsewhere in the WHL, it was: Calgary 4, Edmonton 1; Kootenay 4, Regina 1; Prince Albert 5, Moose Jaw 2; Brandon 5, Swift Current 4 (SO); Medicine Hat 5, Red Deer 4; Portland 1, Kelowna 0; Victoria 4, Kamloops 3; and Everett 5, Vancouver 3.

At Prince George, B.C., Jacobs gave the Cougars a 1-0 lead on a first-period penalty shot after he was hauled down from behind on a breakaway by Wardley.

The advantage didn't last long, though, as Troock and Hickman had the Thunderbirds in front 2-1 after 20 minutes of play.

Wardley scored his first WHL goal when his floater from the neutral zone beat an unprepared Fordyce over the right shoulder, giving Seattle a 3-1 lead.

Prince George then scored three times in the span of 3:01 to reclaim the lead.

Tkatch scored at 14:44, 55 seconds later Forsberg tied the game. Siwak added the winner on the power play at 17:45.

"All in all, the second half of the game was obviously a lot better than the first half," Clark said. "Our character again showed as we came back from being down 3-1 and got ourselves a victory."


Hitmen 4, Oil Kings 1

At Edmonton, Chris Driedger made 34 saves and Greg Chase's second period goal proved to be the winner as Calgary (3-0-0) defeated the Oil Kings (3-1-0).


Ice 4, Pats 1

At Cranbrook, B.C., Sam Reinhart scored two goals and assisted on another and Mackenzie Skapski stopped 19 as Kootenay (1-2-0) defeated Regina (1-3-0).


Raiders 5, Warriors 2

At Prince Albert, Sask., the Raiders scored four times in the third period and Luke Siemens made 25 saves as Prince Albert (2-0-1) beat Moose Jaw (1-2-0).


Wheat Kings 5, Broncos 4 (SO)

At Swift Current, Sask., Eric Roy scored the shootout winner as Brandon (4-0-0) defeated the Broncos (1-0-3).


Tigers 5, Rebels 4

At Red Deer, Alta., Trevor Cox scored twice and added an assist and Marek Langhamer stopped 25-of-26 shots as Medicine Hat (2-1-0) downed the Rebels (0-3-0).


Winterhawks 1, Rockets 0

At Portland, Ore., Cam Lanigan stopped all 31 shots he faced and Derrick Pouliot scored the winner in the third period as the Winterhawks (3-1-0) blanked Kelowna (0-2-1).


Royals 4, Blazers 3

At Victoria, Logan Nelson scored once in regulation and then the shootout winner as the Royals (3-0-0) slipped past Kamloops (2-0-1).


Silvertips 5, Giants 3

At Vancouver, Reid Petryk scored twice and Austin Lotz made 34 saves as Everett (1-2-1) downed the Giants (0-3-0).