Tuesday night’s game at the Accesso ShoWare Center in Kent, Washington, marked the return of Reece Harsch to Seattle. Harsch began his junior career with the Thunderbirds, winning a Western Hockey League Championship with them.
How did Reece handle going back to his old home? Quite well. Harsch led the ICE with one goal and two assists as Winnipeg pummelled Seattle 5-2 as their U.S. Division trip continued.
It was also Reece’s 200th WHL game dating back to his start with Seattle in the 2015-16 season.
“We battled hard. Seattle is hard to play against, but we played well and came out with two points,” said Harsch. “The fans are very lively in this building, but we built up some momentum and went with it.”
“There were a lot of good things. The start was good. We worked hard and our compete was there,” said James Patrick after the game, courtesy of winnipegice.ca “There was a lot to like in the game.”
James also offered a thought on Reece’s 200th game.
“He was excellent. He made a great play to Teply for one goal. Reece was our steadiest defenceman who settled things,” continued Patrick.
Although the ending was favourable for Winnipeg, the start sure wasn’t.
Simon Kubicek scored his third goal of the season to make it 1-0 at the 12:34 mark. The goal was scored on the power play. From there, the ICE took over.
Less than three minutes later at the 15:06 mark, Brad Ginnell scored his eighth of the season. Jackson Leppard got an assist and Harsch got his first of the game.
Tied at one after 20 minutes, Winnipeg kept on coming in the second. 6:06 in, Leppard scored his sixth of the season with Isaac Johnson getting the assist.
Winnipeg extended their lead very early in the second. On the power play, Michal Teply scored his ninth just 42 seconds in to give Winnipeg a 3-1 lead.
Also, early in the final frame, Seattle did get back in it. Alex Morozoff tallied his fourth of the season with Conner Bruggen-Cate getting the assist.
However, Morozoff’s punch was countered a short time later. Just 20 seconds after that goal, Michal Teply scored his 10th goal of the season to double the lead.
With 1:57 left, Harsch capped things off with his first goal and third point on the night as Winnipeg went up 5-2. That ended up being the final.
Harsch had this to say on returning to Seattle, but as a visitor:
“I have a lot of great memories here. I really enjoyed my time,” said Harsch. “It was a lot different playing for the visiting team, but I’m glad we were able to get the win.”
Jesse Makaj was solid, making 26 saves on 28 shots. Roddy Ross, meanwhile, made 33 saves.
Winnipeg is now 12-9-1 and are just one point behind Saskatoon for second in the East Division. Seattle’s struggles continued. They’re now 6-10-2-1, near the bottom of the Western Conference.
Seattle heads to Kamloops on Wednesday night before beginning a three-game homestand on Friday.
Winnipeg, meanwhile, won’t play again until Friday when they kick off a back-to-back. They’re in Tri-City first before finishing their trip on Saturday in Spokane.
- Winnipeg won the battle on the shot clock 38-28.
- Winnipeg finished 1-for-5 on the power play while Seattle was 1-for-2.
- Teply’s goal for the ICE was his 10th. He’s the first Winnipeg player to reach double digits in goals and leads the team with 22 points.
- Seattle has just one win this month and it was this past weekend against Portland.