Leipsic scores three times as Winterhawks equal franchise best for points in a single season

Saturday, 03.16.2013 / 1:24 AM The Canadian Press

PORTLAND, Ore. - Brendan Leipsic scored three goals and Ty Rattie added two more as the Portland Winterhawks matched their best season point-total ever with an 8-4 win over the Seattle Thunderbirds Friday in Western Hockey League play.

Portland equaled its franchise record of 113 points set in the 1980-81 season and has two games remaining to break the record.

Oliver Bjorkstrand, Tyler Wotherspoon and Joey Baker also scored for the Winterhawks (55-12-3), who extended their win streak to four games.

Robert Lipsbergs scored his team-leading 26th of the season for the Thunderbirds (24-38-9), who also got goals from Seth Swenson, Adam Kambeitz and Justin Hickman.

With the hat trick, Leipsic moved into the WHL lead with 48 goals. Rattie has 47, and lineman Nicolas Petan, who had three assists Friday, is tied with Josh Nicholls of the Saskatoon Blades for third with 45.

Leipsic scored twice in the first period to give the Winterhawks a 2-0 lead, but the Thunderbirds got one back when Swenson scored a power-play goal late in the period.

A wild start to the second period saw three goals in the first 3:28, starting with Hickman tying the game 2-2.

Rattie made it 3-2 before Kambeitz tied the game again.

Portland took the lead for good with 2:01 left in the second on Bjorkstrand's 30th of the season.

Leipsic scored his hat-trick goal shorthanded early in the third period, and Rattie and Wotherspoon scored on the power play less than a minute apart later in the period to make it 7-3.

Lipsbergs brought Seattle back within three, but Baker got his first of the season with 40 seconds left to close out the scoring.

Brendan Burke stopped 31 shots to earn the victory in net for Portland, while Danny Mumaugh allowed all eight goals on 36 shots for the Thunderbirds.

Portland went 3 for 8 on the power play, while Seattle went 1 for 3.

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