Thunderbirds: A night on ice

More cowbell! If you need more cowbell in your life, go to a Seattle Thunderbirds hockey game. Do you need more red lights twirling around? Some affixed to audience members’ heads? The Thunderbirds in Kent are waiting for you. Need Cool Bird, the team mascot, in your selfie? Need a T-shirt tossed into the audience? Need cheers? Train whistles? Need cookie eating contests? Need to see some poor sap from the stands put on hockey pants in the middle of the rink and see him fall down when the pants fall down around his ankles? Do you want to see a hockey player get slashed? Roughed? Tripped? Socked in the face and have a major fighting penalty waged upon them? Need scuffles, broken hockey sticks, hot shots? Do you need a power play?

Simply: Do you want a goal in having a good night of sport? The Thunderbirds are calling. You don’t even know you need it until you’re there – the Zamboni trudging across the ice, the players racing up and down the ice, the ice – a gleaming joy for winter’s great sport.

The Thunderbirds played their arch rivals, the Everett Silvertips, on February 1 at accesso ShoWare Center. The game was close, for a while (the T-Birds ultimately lost 5-2), but it was fun throughout. The Thunderbirds are fighting for a wild card playoff spot in the Western Conference in the Western Hockey League.

The game, however lopsided it became late in the 3rd period, was a night of milestones. The Thunderbirds’ 2018 1st round bantam pick, Kai Uchacz, made his team debut in the game. From De Winton, Alberta, he spent the 2017-18 season with the Okatoks Oilers.

Another milestone – Everett’s Bryce Kindopp earned a natural hat trick, the first of his career. The Alberta native helped the team to a 5-0 season records against the Thunderbirds. The other two goals garnered by the Tips came off the sticks of Zack Andrusiak and Dawson Butt.

Andrej Kukuca and Matthew Wedman both scored for the Thunderbirds.

Everett is 36-12-1-1 this season. The Thunderbirds are 19-23-5-1. The two teams square off again tonight in the second of the home-and-home series.

I might head up to see if the Thunderbirds will pay the Tips back for the loss. It should be a good game. I’ll bring my cowbell!

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