Americans Shut Out Medicine Hat, 3-0 - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Americans Shut Out Medicine Hat, 3-0

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KENNEWICK, Wash. -- With a long history of great goaltenders having gone through the Tri-City Americans' locker room, goaltender Drew Owsley is still trying to make a name for himself in his rookie season.

He took a big step towards creating that identity on Sunday night at Toyota Center.

Making just his fifth start of the season, the 17-year-old Owsley stopped all 29 shots he faced and Taylor Procyshen netted two goals to lead the Tri-City Americans (23-8-0-2, 48 pts) to a 3-0 shutout victory over the visiting Medicine Hat Tigers (20-10-3-3, 46 pts) in front of 3,351 fans. The win improves the Americans record at home to 16-2 headed into the holiday break and gives them two straight wins over the Tigers for the first time since Feb. 6, 1999. Meanwhile, the Tigers fall to 2-1 on their trip through the U.S. Division and will head north to take on Spokane on Tuesday.

After battling to a scoreless tie after the first 20 minutes of play, the Americans offense was finally able to break through against the physical Tigers defense. At the 5:50 mark of the second period, Procyshen tallied his first goal of the evening, when he beat rookie goaltender Tyler Bunz. Then, just over three minutes later, Brett Plouffe fired a slap shot that ricocheted off the post and in, giving Tri-City a 2-0 lead.

Still clinging to their 2-0 goal lead entering the third period, Owsley and the Americans were outshot by the Tigers nearly two to one in the final period of play. In a last ditch effort to get back into the game, the Tigers pulled Bunz for the extra attacker with just over two and a half minutes remaining in regulation. However, with 2:03 remaining in the contest, Procyshen recorded an empty net goal for his second of the night and 15th of the season. Bunz finished the night with 17 saves on 19 shots faced in the loss.

It was a rough, physical contest from the start, as the two clubs wound up combining for 110 penalty minutes on 30 infractions. Despite going 0-for-5 on the man-advantage, the Americans special teams went a long way in helping Owsley to his first-career shutout, as they were a perfect 10-for-10 on the penalty kill.

Tri-City will now head into the two-week holiday break on a winning note. The Americans, who will depart for various destinations tomorrow morning, finished the first half of the season atop the U.S. Division with 48 points, just two points off last season's record pace. The Americans will return to Kennewick on Friday, December 26 for a day of practice before taking off for Spokane on Saturday, December 27 and a match-up with the Chiefs. Game time is 7:00 p.m. at Veterans Memorial Arena in Spokane. It will be the fifth match-up of the season between the two rivals, with each team having won two games on home ice.
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