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PREVIEW: Vancouver Giants at Spokane Chiefs (Game #18)

Tonight in Spokane the Vancouver Giants wrap up their three-game journey through the USA when they clash with the Spokane Chiefs for the first time this season. The Giants are 2-0 so far on the trip having earned wins in Portland (3-2 in OT) Wednesday and Kennewick (3-1) last night. Tonight they’ll battle a Spokane team that’s earned points in each of their past two games.

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SPOKANE CHIEFS

OVERVIEW

Head Coach: Adam Maglio

Record: 4-9-2-1

Home Record: 1-6-2-0

Last 10: 2-6-1-1

Goals For/Goals Against: 41 GF/53 GA (-12)

Power Play: 20.6% (9th)

Penalty Kill: 84.5% (3rd)

Leading Scorers: Luke Toporowski (7-8-15), Bear Hughes (6-6-12), Jack Finley (5-6-11)

ABOUT LAST NIGHT

Last night in Kelowna the Spokane Chiefs grabbed a single point in a 2-1 shootout loss to the Rockets. Goaltender Mason Beaupit stopped 36 of 37 shots fired his way and was named the game’s third star. Offensively the Chiefs received a goal from Washington Capitals prospect Bear Hughes. The single point for Spokane moved them into sole possession of eighth place in the Western Conference standings.

‘TOP’ OF THE PILE

After missing the past two games with a suspension, Chiefs top scorer Luke Toporowski will return to the Chiefs lineup tonight. Toporowski leads the Chiefs in both goals (7) and points 15. Two seasons ago, Toporowski had three assists in four meetings against the Giants and for his entire WHL career he’s registered 68 goals and 83 assists for 151 points – Not bad for the eighth overall pick from the 2016 WHL Prospects Draft.

CHIEF NOTES

  • Bear Hughes and Cordel Larson ave tied for the team lead with two game winning goals each.
  • Graham Sward leads all Chiefs blueliners with 11 points (2G, 9A). Sward, cracked NHL Central Scouting’s Preliminary Players to Watch List last month as a “C” prospect. He’s the younger brother of former Giants captain Dalton Sward.
  • The Chiefs are 4-2-1-1 against Vancouver in the past five years and are 2-1-1-0 against them at home in that same span.
  • Five of their 13 power play goals have come at home.
  • The Chiefs are 4-2-1-0 when leading after two periods.

VANCOUVER GIANTS

OVERVIEW

Head Coach: Michael Dyck

Record: 9-7-1-0

Road Record: 4-3-1-0

Last Game: A 3-1 win in the Tri-Cities last night.

Last 10: 5-5

Goals For/Goals Against: 52 GF/49 GA (+3)

Power Play: 20.6% (9th)

Penalty Kill: 81.9% (9th)

Leading Scorers: Justin Sourdif (8-16-24), Ty Thorpe (6-12-18), Fabian Lysell (5-11-16)

THE STORY SO FAR

Tonight in Spokane the Vancouver Giants and Spokane Chiefs will square off for the first time since January 11, 2020. A win for the Giants tonight would give them their third consecutive road victory. So far on this road trip the Giants have earned victories against both Portland and Tri-City. On Wednesday in Portland the Giants earned a 3-2 overtime victory on the strength of 41 saves from Jesper Vikman. Then last night in Tri-City the Giants scored three unanswered goals en route to a 3-1 win over the Tri-City Americans.

ANOTHER LEVEL FOR SOURDIF

Giants captain Justin Sourdif continues to impress during his 19-year-old season in the WHL. The Surrey product comes into tonight’s game leading the Giants with 23 points and his eight goals are tied with Adam Hall for top spot as well. In his past four games, Sourdif has managed three goals and three assists for six points. He earned first star honours last night thanks to his strong two-way game against Tri-City and with each passing game he continues to show why he deserves a spot on Canada’s World Junior team in 2021-2022.

GIANT NOTES

  • Justin Sourdif now has three goals and three assists for six points during his current four-game point streak.
  • Justin Sourdif has nine multi-point games in his first 16 games this season.
  • With two points on Friday, Alex Cotton now has three goals and four assists for seven points in his first six games with the Giants.
  • Ty Thorpe has matched his previous season high for points (18) which he set previously in 2019-20. That season he had 18 points in 62 games. This season he has 18 points in 17 games.
  • The Giants are 5-0 this season when Ty Thorpe scores a goal.
  • The G-Men are 6-2 when they do not surrender a power play goal against.
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