VANCOUVER -- The Spokane Chiefs opened their best-of-seven WHL first round playoff series with the Vancouver Giants with a 7-5 loss in game one of their Western Conference playoff on Friday night.
Vancouver took a 1-0 lead on a Austin Fyten goal with just 2.5 seconds left in the first period. The Giants would get unassisted goals from Cain Franson and Marek Tvrdon less than 2 minutes apart early in the second period to go up 3-0. Blake Gal scored shorthanded from Mike Aviani at 6:42 of the second to bring Spokane within 3-1. Vancouver would take a 4-1 lead on a Jordan Martinook power play goal less than a minute later. Steve Kuhn cut the lead in half at 15:26 from Gal and Brenden Kichton to bring the Chiefs within 4-2. Martinook would score his second of the period less than a minute later though to give Vancouver a 5-2 lead after two.
Spokane would score two goals just 1:05 apart early in the third period to get within 5-4. Jason Fram's power play goal at 6:32 from Gal and Marek Kalus made it 5-3 Giants. Dominick Uher then scored shorthanded from Dylan Walchuk at 7:37 to bring the Chiefs within one. Franson scored at 16:12 to put the Giants back up 6-4, but Mike Aviani would tally from Walchuk and Uher at 18:29 to get the Chiefs back within 6-5. Franson capped a hat trick night with an empty net goal at 19:58 to cap the scoring. Vancouver outshot Spokane 39-24 in the contest.
Game two is set for Saturday night in Vancouver, B.C. at 7pm.