The Tri-City Americans head into Everett tonight with the best record in the Western Hockey League in one hand and a four-game win streak in the other.
The Americans (23-7-0-0, 46 points) are coming off a pair of wins at Victoria earlier this week, and enjoyed a day off Thursday. Friday, they took a ferry back to the mainland, then traveled to Everett.
"It was a beautiful, sunny day, and everyone got a look at beautiful British Columbia," Tri-City coach Jim Hiller said.
Tri-City is 1-1 against the Silvertips (5-20-0-5, 15 points), who lost a 5-2 home game to Spokane on Friday. Everett has lost eight in a row -- including a
4-2 shootout loss at Toyota Center on Dec. 3 -- and have the worst record in the WHL.
The Americans, ranked third in this week's CHL poll, have a three-point lead over Kamloops, Portland and Edmonton in the race for the Scotty Munro trophy.
"We have earned that with good play," Hiller said his team's record. "You have a target on your back every time you play. We just don't want to play well; we want to play well and win. There is still a lot of work to do. It's a matter of being focused.
"We've had a lot of close games and we've fallen behind and had to come back, but we have the confidence to be able to come back."
Tri-City will play without defenseman Mitch Topping, who suffered an upper-body injury Tuesday against Victoria and missed Wednesday's game. Jordan Messier also missed Wednesday's game, but will be in the lineup tonight.
Adam Hughesman leads the Americans with 21 goals and 31 assists, and ranks fifth in league scoring with 52 points.
With two points against Victoria on Wednesday, Hughesman passed Stu Barnes (285) and is tied with Dylan Gyori (286) for fifth on the team's all-time scoring list.