Ty Smith picked the right time to remind folks that he is quite adept at scoring goals.
The 18-year-old defenseman and first-round NHL draft pick scored two goals Tuesday at the Arena, with the second one ending the game in overtime. The Chiefs won 4-3 for their fourth consecutive victory. Spokane has points in its last seven games.
Smith has six goals on the season to go with his team-leading 52 assists.
The Rebels have lost six games in a row and bused out of the Arena after the game. They’re hoping to make it across the snowy state to for a game in Everett on Wednesday .
Smith’s two goals led the way for Spokane. Co-captain Jaret Anderson-Dolan had a goal and two assists. Riley Woods finished with two assists and goaltender Bailey Brkin stopped 29 shots in the win.
The teams traded momentum each period, with Red Deer dictating the pace in the first and third periods, while the Chiefs dominated the second period and were fortunate to play an overtime frame.
Leading 3-2 heading into the third, the Chiefs allowed Red Deer to tie the game just 2:06 into the period on a net mouth scramble goal by Oleg Zaytsev. The Rebels continued to put pressure on the Chiefs until the end of regulation.
“They’re a good hockey club. They work hard and they compete,” Chiefs coach Dan Lambert said of the Rebels. “We were a little on our heels and we weren’t at our best in the third. I thought in the first we took some penalties, but at times we were good. It’s just one of those things where when you play against a good team, sometimes they’re going to have advantages at different times.”
All three Rebel goals weren’t exactly the fancy kind.
Arshdeep Bains scored Red Deer’s first goal just 1:59 into the game after a rebound hit him in the chest and bounced into the net.
Brandon Hagel got Red Deer’s second goal at 7:17 of the second after a shot from the point was deflected and then bounced off a Spokane defenseman past Brkin. Zaytsev’s goal also won’t make any highlight reels.
On the Chiefs’ side, goals came in different ways. Anderson-Dolan scored on a partial breakaway 1 second after a Spokane penalty expired in the first to tie the game at 1.
Smith’s first goal came on the power play after he used his body to keep the puck in the zone and waited patiently for a lane to shoot at.
“Their penalty kill was sitting back a little bit,” Smith said. “I made a pass to (Anderson-Dolan) and he gave it right back, so we did a little switch that we sometimes do at the top. I had a lot of time and (Luc Smith) had a good screen in front, so I was fortunate to get it through.”
Adam Beckman gave Spokane a 3-2 lead at 18:42 of the second after he tipped in a Filip Kral shot from the point.
Smith’s winner came 30 seconds into overtime when he took a pass and one-timed it past Red Deer goaltender Ethan Anders.
“Every time he is out there and has the puck, he wants to make plays and he wants to make the right plays,” Lambert said of Ty Smith.
The Chiefs sit six points back of the Portland Winterhawks in the U.S. Division and have two games in hand. With 15 games left in the regular season, the Chiefs are playing their best hockey of the season.
They hit the road later this week for games at Vancouver on Friday and Tri-City on Saturday.
“We’re trying to catch Portland, so it’s important to keep winning these games,” Smith said. “This will be a big road trip for us.”
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