True and Gropp each score twice in 6-1 win over Brandon
KENT, May 11, 2016 — Alexander True and Ryan Gropp each had two goals in Game 4 of the WHL Championship Wednesday at ShoWare Center to lead the Seattle Thunderbirds to a 6-1 win over the Brandon Wheat Kings.
The Wheat Kings lead the best-of-seven series 3-1. Game 5 is Friday at ShoWare Center at 7:35pm. Single game tickets for Game 5 are now on sale on the T-Birds website and at the ShoWare Center box office. The ShoWare Center box office is open 10am to 5pm Monday through Friday.
The T-Birds need to win Game 5 to send the series back to Brandon. Game 6 is scheduled for Sunday and Game 7 is scheduled for Monday.
Seattle went in front 1-0 at 7:54 of the first period on Ryan Gropp’s fifth goal of the playoffs. Gropp chipped the puck out of the Seattle zone on the left wing. Mathew Barzal got the puck and chipped it into the Brandon zone and chased it down. In the left circle Barzal stopped up and passed the puck back to Ethan Bear inside the blue line at center ice. Bear passed the puck quickly to Gropp in the right circle. Gropp put a hard wrist shot over Brandon goalie Jordan Papirny as he sprawled to make the save.
Brandon outshot Seattle 10-8 in the first period.
The T-Birds took a 3-0 lead on two goals from Alexander True in the second period. At 7:37 of the second period Cavin Leth broke up the left wing with True on his right. Leth passed puck under a Brandon defenseman to True. True one-timed the pass over Papirny’s glove to give the T-Birds a 2-0 lead. Nick Holowko had the second assist on the goal.
Leth and True hooked up again to give the T-Birds a 3-0 lead. Leth skated down the left wing with True on a two-on-one. Leth elected to shoot and the puck hit Papirny and landed behind the goalie. True battled through a Brandon defenseman at the right post and poked the loose puck into the net. Bear had the second assist on the goal.
Both teams had nine shots on goal in the second period. Brandon led 19-17 in shots after two periods.
Gropp scored his second of the night at 9:22 of the third period to extend the T-Birds lead to 4-0. Gropp took a pass from Keegan Kolesar and skated through the neutral zone and into the Brandon zone. Gropp took a hard wrist shot from the left circle and beat Papirny over the blocker. Scott Eansor had the second assist on the goal.
An end-to-end rush by Eansor on a power play led to Seattle’s fifth goal of the game. Eansor took a shot from the slot that Papirny stopped. Donovan Neuls cleaned up the rebound and punched the puck past the goalie. True had the second assist.
Ethan Bear scored on a slap shot on a five-on-three power play to make it a 6-0 Seattle lead. Barzal passed the puck from the right point to Bear at the top of the left circle. Bear one-timed Barzal’s pass and beat Papirny through the legs. Kolesar had the second assist.
Jayce Hawryluk ended Seattle goalie Landon Bow’s shutout at 17:46 of the third with a power-play goal. Tyler Coulter and Ivan Provorov had the assists.
Seattle outshot Brandon 14-12 in the third period. Both teams finished with 31 shots on goal.
Bow made 30 saves on 31 shots to get his 13th win of the playoffs.
Papirny had 25 saves on 31 shots in the loss.
WHL Championship Schedule
Game 1 At Brandon 3, Seattle 2, OT
Game 2 At Brandon 3, Seattle 2, OT
Game 3 Brandon 3, at Seattle 2, OT
Game 4 At Seattle 6, Brandon 1
Game 5 Friday, May 13 at Seattle, 7:35pm
Game 6 Sunday, May 15 at Brandon, 5pm*
Game 7 Monday, May 16 at Brandon, 5pm*
* if necessary
(all time PST)
First period – 1, Seattle, Gropp 5 (Bear, Barzal), 7:54. Penalties – Wedman, Sea (charging), 5:21. Hawryluk, Brn (tripping), 17:13.
Second period – 2, Seattle, True 4 (Leth, Holowko), 7:37. 3, Seattle, True 5 (Leth, Bear), 9:51. Penalties – Ottenbreit, Sea (roughing), 8:48. Erkamps, Brn (roughing), 8:48. Holowko, Sea (holding), 16:46. Mattheos, Brn (slashing), 16:56.
Third period – 4, Seattle, Gropp 6 (Kolesar, Eansor), 9:22. 5, Seattle, Neuls 5 (Eansor, True), 12:07 (pp). 6, Seattle, Bear 8 (Barzal, Kolesar), 14:12 (pp). 7, Brandon, Hawryluk 4 (Coulter, Provorov), 17:46 (pp). Penalties – Barzal, Sea (interference), 6:04. Erkamps, Brn (interference), 10:15. Kaspick, Brn (high-sticking), 13:26. Hawryluk, Brn (slashing), 14:02. Provorov, Brn (cross checking), 14:54. Tyszka, Sea (tripping), 16:14. Campbell, Brn (goaltender interference), 18:11. Ottenbreit, Sea (unsportsmanlike conduct), 19:06. Wheaton, Brn (unsportsmanlike conduct), 19:06.
Shots on goal – Seattle 8-9-14 31, Brandon 10-9-12 31. Goalies – Seattle, Bow 31 shots-30 saves (13-4); Brandon, Papirny 31-25 (15-5). Power plays – Seattle 2-7; Brandon 1-4. A – 5,373. Referees – Jeff Ingram, Steve Papp. Linesmen – Ron Dietterle, Nathan Van Oosten.