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Leipsic scores winner as the Winterhawks down the Giants in OT

Saturday, 02.16.2013 / 9:44 PM / News

The Canadian Press

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Leipsic scores winner as the Winterhawks down the Giants in OT

PORTLAND, Ore. - Brendan Leipsic scored 49 seconds into overtime to lift the Portland Winterhawks to a 4-3 victory over the Vancouver Giants Saturday afternoon in Western Hockey League action.

Nicolas Petan, Paul Bittner and Taylor Leier also scored for Portland (47-9-3), which won for the first time in four overtime games this season.

Leipsic and Petan each have 41 goals this season, which leads the WHL.

Carter Popoff, Travis McEvoy and Cain Franson scored for Vancouver (15-43-1), which is 0-3-1 against the Winterhawks this season.

In a battle of the teams with the best and worst records in the WHL, the underdog Giants took a 2-0 lead in the second period on goals by Popoff and McEvoy.

Leier's goal with 1:05 remaining in the second period gave the Winterhawks some momentum, and Petan scored on the power play early in the third to make it 2-2.

With 7:35 left in regulation, Portland's Seth Jones fired a wrist shot from the point that trickled through Giants goalie Jared Rathjen and was tapped in by Bittner to give the Winterhawks their first lead.

Vancouver responded with a goal by Franson with 3:59 left in regulation to tie the game and set up overtime.

Brendan Burke stopped 29-of-32 shots for Portland to earn the win as Rathjen made 31 saves in defeat for Vancouver.

The Winterhawks went 1 for 6 on the power play while the Giants finished scoreless on four chances.

Quote of the Day

When we started our journey we made a commitment to our fans to be relevant and to see the Chicago Blackhawks become the best professional hockey organization. There are not two finer symbols of that than Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane. The commitment we have made to these incredible young men is equal to the commitment they have made to our team, our fans, our entire organization and the city of Chicago.

— Chicago Blackhawks owner Rocky Wirtz on signing Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane to contract extensions