Mitch Holmberg's hat trick helped lead the Spokane Chiefs to their first win of the pre-season in a 6-3 victory over the Seattle Thunderbirds on Sunday afternoon and evened their record at 1-1 on the weekend. Nineteen-year-old Todd Fiddler had a goal and two assists as Spokane outshot Seattle 36-13.
Seattle scored the first goal of the game just 1:10 in when Spokane native Tyler Alos found the back of the net. It took the Chiefs 19:02 to tie it up when as 18-year-old rookie Jackson Playfair scored his first of the pre-season.
Two of Homlberg's goals were scored in the second, the first on a power play from Dylan Walchuk and Fiddler at 2:10. Nineteen-year-old Collin Valcourt gave the Chiefs a 3-1 lead at 10:28 before Holmberg scored again at 12:27. Seattle would make it a 4-2 game at 18:22 with a Riley Sheen goal.
Fiddler, from Walchuk, pushed the Chiefs lead to 5-2 at 9:39 of the third. Mitch Elliot pulled Seattle back within two at at 13:57 of the third.
Holmberg, the Chiefs leading goal scorer in the playoffs last season with 11 in 13 games, completed his three goal game with an empty netter with just 30-second remaining. Fiddler had the lone assist.
Trevor Martin started in goal for the Chiefs and stopped six of seven shots in 30:28 while Garret Hughson was four for six in 29:32 of work.
Spokane was whistled for just two minor penalties and went 1-1 on the penalty kill. The Chiefs were 1-6 on the power play.
The Chiefs play in the Tri-City Americans Red Lion Hotels Pre-Season Tournament next weekend with games on Friday, September 7th against Everett and Saturday, September 8th against Tri-City in Kennewick.
The pre-season schedule will end with a home game on the 13th versus Kelowna at Eagles Ice-A-Rena and another trip to Tri-City on Friday, September 14th.
The Chiefs' regular season will open on Saturday, September 22nd when Spokane visits Tri-City.