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Efficient goaltending helps Prince George hold off Spokane Chiefs

From staff reports

PRINCE GEORGE, B.C. – Taylor Gauthier stopped 37 of 38 Spokane shots as the Prince George Cougars scored twice in the first period and held on for a 2-1 victory against the visiting Chiefs in Western Hockey League action Friday night.

Center Erik Atchison scored the lone goal for the Chiefs, a backhander off an assist from Luke Toporowski at 9 minutes, 26 seconds of the second period. It was the first goal of the season for the Las Vegas native and the third of his WHL career.

Spokane (4-4-1-0) was unable to get the equalizer despite outshooting the Cougars 30-10 over the final two periods. The Chiefs were 0 for 3 on the power play, including two opportunities in the third.

Tyson Upper had a goal and an assist for Prince George (3-5-0-1) and Filip Koffer added two assists. Matej Toman scored for other goal for the Cougars, who have won both meetings against Spokane this season.

Toman opened the scoring at 4:58 of the first, assisted by Upper and Koffer.

Upper made it 2-0 at 11:46 of the period, his third of the season. Koffer and Ethan Browne were credited with assists.

Chiefs goaltender Arnold Campbell made 22 saves, including 12 in the first period.

Spokane was called for just one penalty, a slash by Post Falls native Bear Hughes at 5:45 of the second period.

The Cougars remained tied with a Victoria, which beat Swift Current 4-0 Friday, for fourth place in the B.C. Division. The Chiefs stayed in fourth in the U.S. Division.

The teams will meet again at 7 tonight at the CN Centre.

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