Tri-City Americans

Ams fall 5-4 in preseason action

KENNEWICK -- The Tri-City Americans played off their youthful exuberance in the first period, but their youth caught up with them over the next two periods and the Kootenay Ice took advantage.

Luke Philip scored with 1:48 left in regulation to lead the Ice to a 5-4 victory over the Americans on Thursday night in the opening game of the Red Lion Hotels Preseason Tournament at Toyota Center.

"We came out with a lot of energy like we do at home and caught them with bus legs," Tri-City coach Jim Hiller said. "They pushed back in the second half and we didn't have the strength to push back in."

The tournament continues today with Kootenay playing Everett at 11 a.m., and Seattle playing Spokane at 3 p.m. Tri-City will play Portland at 7:05 p.m.

The Americans (2-1), who sat six veterans who are heading to NHL camps this weekend, jumped out to a 3-1 lead after the first period, with Mackenzie Royer getting things started with a goal just 29 seconds into the action.

The Ice answered with a goal from Kurt Johnas 41/2 minutes later, but it was all Americans the rest of the period.

Drydn Dow gave Tri-City a 2-1 lead at 5:22 as his shot from the right wall ricocheted off Jeff Hubic's skate and into the net past Brett Teskey.

Veteran forward Mason Wilgosh took advantage of one of the Americans' four power plays in the period, taking a pass off the back wall from Michal Plutnar and beating Teskey stick side at 11:57.

The Americans' sterling first-period performance showed a bit of tarnish in the second as the Ice scored twice on three shots in a span of 4:08 to tie the game at 3.

Jaedon Descheneau took advantage of sloppy play as Tri-City tried to clear the zone and handcuffed Comrie for a 3-2 game at 2:25.

Sam Reinhart tied the score at 4:08 with a power-play goal in the midst of a scramble in front of the net.

"We came out hard in the first and were working hard," Wilgosh said. "We have some learning to do. It's nice to be a leader and take charge. It's good for me to be able to set an example and a chance for the younger guys to show what they have."

Tied at 3 going into the third, Tyson Dallman gave the Americans the lead just 1:59 in the period, only to see the Ice come back with a power-play goal by Reinhart at 4:29.

"They left us with a more questions than answers in a lot of respects," Hiller said. "We didn't get enough push at the end. This is a great opportunity for them to play a lot of minutes. A lot of guys get sent home saying they never got a chance. Everyone will get a chance here. The opportunity is there for them."

Notes

* The Spokane Chiefs will be without forward Mike Aviani tonight against Seattle and Saturday against Tri-City. Aviani was suspended four games by the WHL for a boarding major and game misconduct against the Thunderbirds on Sept. 2. He already has sat out two games.

* The Brandon Wheat Kings will be without veteran defenseman Brodie Melnychuk indefinitely after he broke his wrist during training camp last weekend.

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