(Everett, WA) Bryce Kindopp and Connor Dewar were an effective duo last season for the Everett Silvertips (1-1). Dewar led the team in scoring with 81 points, while Kindopp added 39 goals and 73 points.
Dewar has moved on to play professional hockey, leaving an opening for the position of running mate with Kindopp. Consider Saturday night’s 6-0 Everett win over the visiting Victoria Royals his application for the position. Goncalves had an assist on four goals in the game, which is a career high.
Kindopp also had four points as he scored two goals and added two assists. The overage forward has six points now in just two games – tops in the WHL.
“He’s got great vision. He’s great behind the net. If I’m open – I know he will find me there. It’s the same thing he’s always been doing,” Kindopp said of Goncalves after the two combined for eight points.
Wyatte Wylie added two goals for Everett.
Victoria actually had the run of play in the early going with Everett failing to notch a shot on net in the first eight-plus minutes.
Victoria head coach Dan Price summed up the game where both teams got many breakaways and odd-man rushes.
“I think both teams probably felt there was some early-season chaos out there. Lots of miscues led to scoring chances both ways. For us and for them. You have to give them credit. When they had their chances, they cashed in and we couldn’t quite push ours across the goal line, though the chances were there.”
Victoria pressured Everett goalie Dustin Wolf with several great scoring chances. On one such chance though, Carson Miller just missed on a chance in front, then hauled down an Everett defender.
On the ensuing power play, Everett found their offensive game and tested Victoria goalie Shane Farkas. He stood tall, but Jackson Berezowski had some strong looks in night as the net-front presence.
The power play was where Everett found their offense with seven of their 11 first period shots.
Their second power play of the night is where they found the net behind Farkas.
Gage Goncalves wired a cross-ice pass to a pinching Wyatte Wylie and the Philadelphia Flyers prospect top-shelved a shot on a sliding Farkas for his first of the season.
Farkas then kept the game close with a stop on Kindopp on a short-handed penalty shot.
After a first period where Victoria owned a lot of the 5-on-5 play, Everett scored just 17 seconds into the second period while the teams were playing 4-on-4.
Goncalves was again the primary set-up man as he fed a driving Kindopp and the ‘Tips captain backhanded a shot by Farkas’s blocker for his second goal this season.
The Silvertips used the momentum off the goal to pressure Farkas and the Royals blue line and this eventually led to a Kindopp shot squeaking over to his right into no-man’s land. Justyn Gurney was right there and he shuffled the puck into the gaping net for the 3-0 Everett lead.
Despite starting the third period on the penalty kill, the Silvertips owned the scoreboard in the third and put the game away with three goals over 2:16 to end the night for Farkas and win their first game this season.
First, Max Patterson took advantage of a tired Victoria defense by looping around from behind the net and solving Farkas. Then Kindopp interrupted a pass at the blue line and broke in 2-on-0 with Goncalves. Kindopp elected to shoot and went bar-down on Farkas.
Lastly, Wylie anticipated a pass from Jacob Herauf, weaved his way into the Victoria zone and beat Farkas in the same spot he did before, for his second of the night and the 6-0 lead.
That would be it for Farkas, who was pulled in favor of Brock Gould after allowing six goals on 28 shots.
Price did not think his starting goalie played bad, despite the stat line.
“He had a good game. The goals in the third were not his fault. Those were turnovers and missed assignments by us. With Everett coming right down main street towards the net. Not his fault.”
Everett had an extended power play and tested Gould, but could not get the touchdown. Gould stopped all four shots he saw in relief.
In net for Everett, Wolf earned his first shutout of the season and 13th in his career, stopping all 26 shots.
“We see him respond that way after almost every loss, Everett head coach Dennis Williams said of his starting goalie. “It’s hard not to come back like that with an elite goalie. We didn’t even talk about last night with him today and he got refocused. Didn’t see a ton of action but when he did, he was really solid,” Williams told everettsilvertips.com.
Victoria heads home for their home opener on Friday against the Prince George Cougars. That will be the first of two straight at home against the Cougars.
Everett heads to Kelowna to take on the 2020 Memorial Cup host Rockets Saturday.
-Kaid Oliver, Phillip Schultz and Alex Bolshakov were all missing off the forward group for Victoria.
-Gianni Fairbrother, Jake Christiansen, Martin Fasko-Rudas, Michal Gut and Brendan Lee were all out for Everett. All of those were expected, except for Gut, who appeared to get injured during the first period of Everett’s Friday night loss to Tri-City.
-Gary Haden, Ty Yoder and Tarun Fizer were Everett’s most effective line in the game, creating many scoring opportunities. Overall though there seemed to be a feeling out process as the Royals had many new faces break into the lineup. “It will take some time to develop some chemistry throughout the lineup because you are playing with five guys so they need to develop their chemistry interpositionally. I thought it did improve as the game went on,” Price said of the chemistry.
-Victoria’s 16-year-old defenseman Nolan Bentham got into his first WHL game. He was slotted in as a forward.”We adapted really well. We practiced him at forward this week for that reason in case we needed to use him there and the opportunity arose. I thought he did a great job. He used his speed and his athleticism and physicality. He looks older than he is is. He plays like an 18-year-old, Price stated.