EVERETT – After a scoreless 60 minutes of hockey, Nikita Scherbak found the back of the net in overtime to lift the Everett Silvertips to a narrow 1-0 victory against the Vancouver Giants at XFINITY Arena. Over 7,700 fans were in attendance as the ‘Tips improved to 21-9-3-1 before playing eight straight road games including their two-week road trip to face the Eastern Division.
Goaltender Austin Lotz (16-6-1-1) turned away all 28 shots faced on the way to his eighth career shutout and first star honors in the contest. Nikita Scherbak scored the only goal of the game, his 16th of the year, on the powerplay in extra time. Everett went 2 for 2 on the penalty kill and 1 for 2 on the powerplay.
The Silvertips came out firing in the first to take an early lead in shots. Everett had the first two powerplays of the game before Vancouver got a late powerplay of their own that the ‘Tips successfully killed off. Neither team was able to find the back of the net, leaving the score tied through the first 20 minutes with Everett leading 13-5 on the shot clock.
After controlling most on the play in the first, the ‘Tips found themselves on their heels in the second and the Giants quickly built a lead on the shot clock. Vancouver took a 17-15 advantage heading into the final period of play with both teams still looking for their first goal of the game.
Everett couldn’t generate much offensively in the third, but kept the puck out of their own net as Lotz continued to play well. With a combined 17 shots in the final twenty minutes, the game ultimately went to overtime where the first goal of the game would also determine the winner. The Giants took a penalty 17 seconds into extra time to give the ‘Tips a golden opportunity on the powerplay. Nikita Scherbak fired a shot from the top of the circle less than 10 seconds later to give the Silvertips a 1-0 victory.
Vancouver goaltender Cody Porter (5-6-1-0) stopped 21 of 22 shots in the loss. Final shots were 28-22 in favor of the Giants.
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The Silvertips play their next eight games on the road, starting with a visit to the Tri-City Americans Sunday afternoon at 5:05 pm. Radio broadcast coverage starts at 4:30 on Fox Sports 1380 and the live online webcast will be offered for free through WHL Live. The ‘Tips will then face the Seattle Thunderbirds Tuesday evening before embarking on their two-week East Division road swing.
For more information visit www.everettsilvertips.com or call 425-252-5100. To keep up with all the latest team news and information, “like” the Everett Silvertips Hockey Club on Facebook or follow @WHLSilvertips on Twitter.