May 20th, 2018

Tigers come up short against Giants

By Ryan McCracken on January 6, 2018.

Medicine Hat Tigers goaltender Jordan Hollett stops a shot from Vancouver Giants winger Brayden Watts during the first period of Saturday's Western Hockey League game at the Canalta Centre. -- NEWS PHOTO RYAN MCCRACKEN

The Medicine Hat Tigers fell back into the loss column on Saturday night at the Canalta Centre.

Vancouver Giants goaltender Todd Scott stopped 11 shots in the third period to hold the Tabbies at bay and secure a 5-3 victory after playing catch-up for the first half of the game.

The Giants were buzzing off the hop, but Tigers goaltender Jordan Hollett turned aside a slew of early chances to keep his team in a scoreless contest entering an early penalty kill — then Ryan Chyzowski and Tyler Preziuso went to work shorthanded.

The pair of two-way forwards forced a turnover in the defensive end then Chyzowski fed Preziuso for his 11th of the season to give the Tigers the first goal for the fifth consecutive contest after allowing the opener for seven straight games.

But the Giants answered back in a hurry when Dawson Holt broke in down the left wing and beat Hollett thanks in part to a fortuitous bounce. While Hollett got a piece of the shot, the puck snuck through his equipment and took an odd hop into the back of the net to leave the teams even at the break.

The end-to-end action picked back up in the second period after Chyzowski regained Medicine Hat’s lead on the man advantage. The 17-year-old Kamloops product was waiting in the low circle when James Hamblin put the puck on his stick, and he beat Scott clean on the ensuing chance.

Giants centre Brad Morrison stepped up to answer the goal in less than a minute later when he took a feed from Kaleb Bulych in the slot and beat Hollett through the wickets, then Brayden Watts gave Vancouver their first lead of the evening with a shorthanded marker of their own.

While Gary Haden made sure the lead didn’t last long by bearing Scott with a deflection on the power play later in the frame, the Giants came alive in the third.

Vancouver regained their narrow lead early in the frame when Ty Ronning converted on the power play for his 36th goal of the season — with Dalton Gally in the box for tripping — then Holt put the game out of reach by deflecting a Skeoch point shot past Hollett six minutes later.

The Tigers pushed for a window back into the contest but were unable to find an answer for Scott, who stopped 23 to push Vancouver to 23-14-3-2 on the season.

Hollett stopped 25 shots in the loss, dropping Medicine Hat to 22-16-3-0.

The Tigers open a four-game East Division road trip Wednesday in Saskatoon against the Blades (21-17-2-1).

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