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Stanley Cup Final

Rookie Bittner with three points as the Winterhawks edge the Americans

Saturday, 12.29.2012 / 9:14 PM / News

The Canadian Press

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Rookie Bittner with three points as the Winterhawks edge the Americans

PORTLAND, Ore. - Rookie Paul Bittner scored two goals and added an assist as the Portland Winterhawks defeated the visiting Tri-City Americans 4-3 on Saturday in Western Hockey League action.

Brendan Leipsic and Nicolas Petan also scored for the Winterhawks (31-5-1), who have won eight straight games and 20 of their last 21.

Connor Rankin scored twice for the Americans (20-14-3), who also got a goal from Brian Williams.

Bittner, a 16-year-old, gave Portland a 1-0 lead at 11:04 of the first period and Petan made it 2-0 after 20 minutes of play.

The Americans scored all three of their goals in the second period, with Leipsic answering for Portland to make it 3-3 through two periods of play.

Bittner scored the game-winner on the power play with 8:25 left in regulation, redirecting a shot by Troy Rutkowski past Tri-City netminder Luke Lee-Knight.

Mac Carruth made 29 saves to earn the win for Portland as Lee-Knight stopped 26 shots in defeat.

Portland went 1 for 3 with the man advantage, while Tri-City finished 1 for 2.

Quote of the Day

You know what? We've played in some pretty special buildings along this playoff run so far. You start in Detroit, you go to Montreal, you come here … I think it's the first team to beat three Original Six teams to get to the Final if I'm not mistaken. That says how tough the road has been. Those are tough places to win.

— Lightning forward Steven Stamkos after Game 7 win vs. Rangers on Friday in New York