Warriors edge Winterhawks in opener of WHL final

PORTLAND — Matthew Savoie’s goal at 16:58 of the third period snapped a 2-2 tie and lifted the visiting Moose Jaw Warriors to a 3-2 win over the Portland Winterhawks in the opening game of the Western Hockey League’s Championship Final on Friday night.

Atley Calvert (penalty shot) and Denton Mateychuk also scored for the Warriors, who are playing in their first-ever WHL championship series.

Diego Buttazzoni and Gabe Klassen scored for the Winterhawks, who last won the WHL championship in 2013.

The Warriors outshot the hosts 38-34 and led 2-1 heading into the third period at Veterans Memorial Coliseum.

The Winterhawks went 0-for-1 on the power play, while the Warriors were 0-for-3.

Game 2 is Saturday night in Portland, then the series moves to Moose Jaw, Sask., for Games 3, 4 and 5, if necessary.

POKE CHECKS: The Warriors needed seven games to eliminate the Saskatoon Blades in the Eastern Conference final, while the Winterhawks beat the Prince George Cougars in six games in the Western Conference final.

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