KELOWNA, March 22, 2013 – Luke Lockhart scored with 51 seconds left in overtime Friday night at Prospera Place to defeat the Kelowna Rockets 5-4 in Game 1 of their best-of-seven first round playoff series.
Roberts Lipsbergs took a shot from the left circle that Kelowna goalie Jordon Cooke stopped but the puck came to Connor Honey. Honey got a shot off that Cooke stopped but Lockhart was in the slot to slam Honey’s rebound past a prone Cooke. The T-Birds flew off the bench and swarmed Lockhart after his game-winning goal.
Lipsbergs and Jesse Forsberg each had a goal and two assists and Connor Honey had two assists.
The T-Birds came back three times to tie the game, the last time when Lockhart scored at 13:30 of the third period to keep the T-Birds in the game.
Game 2 of the series is Saturday at Prospera Place at 7:05pm. The series returns to Seattle for Game 3 on Tuesday at 7:05pm and Game 4 on Wednesday at 7:05pm.
Since 1996 this was the sixth time the T-Birds and Rockets had played an overtime playoff game. In 2008 in their first round playoff series each team won an overtime game. The T-Birds won Game 3 of that series on March 24 when David Richard scored the game winner at 15:12 of overtime. In Game 6 of the series, on March 29, Lucas Bloodoff scored at 10:59 of overtime to win it for the Rockets and send the series to a seventh game, which the T-Birds won.
Kelowna (0-1) took a 1-0 lead at 5:52 of the first period when Damon Severson scored. Tyson Baillie and Myles Bell had the assists.
Seattle (1-0) tied the game 1-1 at 13:33 of the first. As a Rockets power play ended Riley Sheen grabbed the puck in the neutral zone to create a three-on-one break for the T-Birds. At the top of the right circle Sheen passed the puck to Alexander Delnov in the slot. Delnov sent it right back to Sheen and he blasted the puck at Cooke. Sheen’s shot beat Cooke low for the tying goal.
The Rockets took a 2-1 lead at 18:48 of the first on a goal from Dylen McKinlay. Bell had the only assist on the goal.
Both teams had 11 shots on goal in the first period.
The T-Birds tied the game 2-2 at 4:03 of the second period on a Lipsbergs goal. Forsberg battled for the puck behind the Rockets net. He came out from behind the goal on the right side and crossed the puck to Honey in the left circle. Honey put a backhand shot on net that Cooke stopped. Lipsbergs was on top of the crease and poked the rebound under Cooke.
Seattle took a 3-2 lead at 10:33 of the second. Shea Theodore sprung Sheen on a two-on-one break. Sheen got a shot off but Cooke made the save. Sheen got his rebound and found Forsberg inside the blue line at center ice. Forsberg beat Cooke with a slap shot over the blocker for the go-ahead goal.
Kelowna tied the game 3-3 on a five-on-three power-play goal by Tyson Baillie at 19:02 of the second. Zach Franko and Severson had the assists.
Both teams had 22 shots after two periods.
The Rockets took a 4-3 lead 59 seconds into third period when Bell scored. Severson had the only assist.
The T-Birds tied the game 4-4 at 13:30 of the third. Evan Wardley moved the puck to Forsberg who took a slap shot with Lockhart in front of Cooke. Forsberg’s shot hit Lockhart and dropped to the ice. Lockhart reached to his right for the puck with Cooke down and was able to bang it past the goalie.
Seattle outshot Kelowna 13-9 in the third period and led 35-31 in shots after regulation.
The T-Birds outshot the Rockets 15-8 in overtime and 50-39 in the game.
Seattle goalie Brandon Glover made 35 saves on 39 shots to get the win.
Cooke stopped 45 of 50 shots in the loss.
First Round Playoff Schedule
Game 1 – Seattle 5, at Kelowna 4, OT
Game 2 – Saturday, March 23 at Kelowna at Prospera Place at 7:05 p.m.
Game 3 – Tuesday, March 26 vs. Kelowna at ShoWare Center at 7:05 p.m.
Game 4 – Wednesday, March 27 vs. Kelowna at ShoWare Center at 7:05 p.m.
Game 5 – Saturday, March 30 at Kelowna at Prospera Place at 7:05 p.m.*
Game 6 – Tuesday, April 2 vs. Kelowna at ShoWare Center at 7:05 p.m.*
Game 7 – Wednesday, April 3 at Kelowna at Prospera Place at 7:05 p.m.*
* if necessary
The T-Birds will continue the popular 2-for-Tuesday promotion for Game 3. This means all tickets will be two-for-one and all beer, soda, popcorn and hot dogs will be $2. The 2-for-Tuesday group ticket special will also apply for Game 3. Fans that buy 20 tickets will get 20 tickets FREE for a total of 40 tickets. The 2-for-Tuesday promotion will also apply to Game 6 if this game is played.
The T-Birds have a ticket special for Game 4. Fans that purchase 8 premium seats will receive two FREE tickets for total of 10 tickets to Game 4.
Contact the T-Birds at 253-239-PUCK (7825) or firstname.lastname@example.org to purchase Game 3 2-for-Tuesday group playoff tickets, the Game 4 get 10 tickets for the price of 8 special or a for a 10-game playoff ticket package.
First period – 1, Kelowna, Severson 1 (Baillie, Bell), 5:52. 2, Seattle, Sheen 1 (Delnov), 13:33. 3, Kelowna, McKinlay 1 (Bell), 18:48. Penalties – Nyberg, Kel (interference), 2:19. Johnson, Sea (roughing), 4:19. Fowlie, Kel (roughing), 4:19. Forsberg, Sea (interference), 7:46. Smith, Sea (delay of game), 11:23.
Second period – 4, Seattle, Lipsbergs 1 (Honey, Forsberg), 4:03. 5, Seattle, Forsberg 1 (Sheen, Theodore), 10:33. 6, Kelowna, Baillie 1 (Franko, Severson), 19:02 (pp). Penalties – Wardley, Sea (cross checking), 4:53. Honey, Sea (roughing), 9:19. Johnston, Kel (roughing), 9:19. Elliot, Sea (major-fighting), 12:13. Goulbourne, Kel (major-fighting), 12:13. Franko, Kel (tripping), 13:42. Theodore, Sea (tripping), 18:21. Hauf, Sea (tripping), 18:51.
Third period – 7, Kelowna, Bell 1 (Severson), :59. 8, Seattle, Lockhart 1 (Forsberg, Wardley), 13:30. Penalties – No penalties.
Overtime – 9, Seattle, Lockhart 2 (Honey, Lipsbergs), 19:09. Penalties – No penalties.
Shots on goal – Seattle 11-11-13-15 50, Kelowna 11-11-9-8 39. Goalies – Seattle, Glover 39 shots-35 saves (1-0); Kelowna, Cooke 50-45 (0-1). Power plays – Seattle 0-2; Kelowna 1-6. A – 5,467. Referees – Tyler Adair, Devin Klein. Linesmen – Ryan Gibbons, Bevan Mills.