Blazers win 3-2 vs Tri-City Americans, Needham scores hat-trick

By Tim O'Donovan - Kamloops Blazers
January 8, 2016 - 10:37pm Updated: January 9, 2016 - 11:12am

KAMLOOPS — Matt Needham led the way with three goals as the Kamloops Blazers (19-14-4-2) defeated the Tri-City Americans (17-22-2-0) 3-2 on Friday night at home. 

The Americans had some jump out of the gate hemming the Blazers in their own zone in the first period. 

Beau McCue scored the game's first goal 8:28 into the period. He snapped a shot over the glove of Connor Ingram to make it 1-0 Americans. 

The Blazers finished the period strong with Jermaine Loewen in on the forecheck. He helped create chances, as the Blazers gained some momentum entering the second period.

Matt Needham tied the game up 21 seconds into the second period. He wristed a shot over the glove of goaltender Evan Sarthou to make it 1-1. 

Needham scored his second of the game 2:23 later, scoring from the same spot for his 11th goal of the season. 

The Blazers had their chances to extend the lead, but Sarthou made some good saves. 

At the other end, Connor Ingram was having another solid night in goal. 

Dylan Coghlan tied the game up on a converted odd man rush. Maxwell James fed Coghlan as he one-timed a shot over the blocker of Ingram to make it a 2-2 game with just over 11 minutes left in the game.

Matt Needham gave the Blazers the lead back 2:03 later. He went to the net and pushed in a pass from Collin Shirley for a 3-2 lead. 

The Americans had a lot of pressure in the final two minutes of the game, but the Blazers defended well to earn a 3-2 win. 

Matt Needham finished the game with three goals. Deven Sideroff collected three assists for the Blazers, while Collin Shirley added two helpers. 

Both teams finished 0-for-2 on the power play. The Blazers outshot the Americans 32-30 in the game. 

The Blazers will hit the road for five straight game starting in Portland on Saturday night. 

Blazers win 4-3 In Portland