KENNEWICK -- Playing the Tri-City Americans on Teddy Bear Toss night is like finding coal in your Christmas stocking. It's just not a good day.
Brendan Shinnimin scored just 1:10 into the game, bringing a shower of 2,839 stuffed animals to the ice. It was the first of four goals as the Americans handed the Seattle Thunderbirds a 4-1 loss Friday night before a crowd of 4,776 at Toyota Center.
"Everyone before the game wanted that goal," said Shinnimin, who also had two assists. "It feels good to get it going and get the team going. When it goes to a good cause, it makes it that much better."
The Americans (17-10-1-1, 36 points) improved to 9-0-0-0 on Teddy Bear Toss night. The two teams will meet again tonight at ShoWare Center in Kent.
"It's a great night," said Tri-City coach Jim Hiller. "You want to score early and everyone knows what it's for. When the home team wins, everyone goes home happy."
Seattle (13-9-3-4, 33 points) came out firing at the start of the game, but instead of finding the net, Erik Bonsor rang the puck off the post just 30 seconds into the action. The Americans quickly turned things around and took control of the game.
Shinnimin, with a nice pass from Mason Wilgosh, went down the left lane and put the puck just out of reach of Calvin Pickard's glove and into the net.
"They hit the post and we went down and scored," Hiller said. "Sometimes there is some luck and randomness that happens in hockey and we came out on the right side of that tonight."
The Americans took a 2-0 lead at 5:06 of the second period as Brooks Macek -- using a screen by Neal Prokop -- beat Pickard from the top of the right circle on the power play for his eighth goal of the season.
Seattle cut into Tri-City's lead 6 1/2 minutes later when Charles Wells picked up a loose puck off a rebound off Drew Owsley pads and put the puck in an open corner of the net at the right post.
A bit of fancy stick work by Shinnimin around the back of the net and a nice pass in the crease to Adam Hughesman helped the Americans take a 3-1 lead at 17:41.
Kruise Reddick finished the scoring at 14:53 of the third with a power-play goal. With the goal, Reddick surpassed Ken McKay (75) for 17th on the Americans' all-time goals scored list, and passed Ian McDonald (217) for 13th on the all-time scoring list.
The Americans outshot the Thunderbirds 48-23 and were 2-for-10 on the power play.
"Ten power plays to three. They are a good offensive team, you can't put them on the power play that many times," said Seattle coach Rob Sumner, whose team is 0-4 against Tri-City this season. "In the first, we were outshot -- we turned down some shots and missed some. In the second, there was a stretch where we started to get in a rhythm, then we gave up a simple goal (Hughesman's) at a critical time. That was a big goal to give up."
Pickard, who is headed to Team Canada's World Junior camp today, finished with 44 saves. Pickard is winless in nine career starts at Toyota Center.
Notes: Reddick has points in eight straight games. ... In addition to the 2,839 toys collected, there was $603 raised for the players' education fund and $525 raised for the March of Dimes. ... Seattle rookie LW Marcel Noebels, who has 10 goals and nine assists, will play for Germany in the World Junior Championship. ... Seattle D-man Dave Sutter will compete for a spot on Switzerland's roster for the WJC.