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PHOTO: Wenatchee native Matt Dorsey (28) celebrates his second goal of the night on Wednesday at Town Toyota Center. The Wild won, 5-2.
CREDIT: Russ Alman / Digital Media Northwest

by Arch Ecker

When the Powell River Kings bus broke down in November on the way to Wenatchee, a rescheduled date in January was selected, and that game was played last night, ending in a 5-2 win for the Wild to keep pace with the division leading Vernon Vipers, who also won.

Wenatchee dominated the opening period, outshooting the Kings 11-2, and jumping to a 1-0 lead on an AJ Vanderbeck snipe at 8:02, when Murphy Stratton executed a nifty dangle at center ice, then fed a pass to Jasper Weatherby, who dished to Vanderbeck, a right handed shot driving up the left wing and he rocketed the shot up high for his 27th goal of the season. The Kings tied it up when Jonny Evans swept a backhander home at 5:55, capping a 3-on-1 rush that was initially denied by Seth Eisele. The Wild retook the lead at 11:22 when Daniel Chladek snapped home a pass from Jackson Wozniak from below the goal line after a tenacious Wozniak forecheck that created the opportunity. Powell River was handed a full 2 minute 5-on-3 power play shortly after, but the Wild were able to kill it off, and led 2-1 after two periods. Wenatchee local Matt Dorsey collected a loose puck set up by Lucas Sowder and Sam Morton to give the Wild a 3-1 lead at 3:53 of the third. Powell River pulled back to within a goal on a midpoint rip from Andy Stevens at 7:39, but Dorsey regained the two goal cushion, burying a sharp backhander after cutting to his left in the high slot, assisted by Sowder and Cooper Zech. AJ Vanderbeck capped it with an empty-netter, fed by Stratton and Zech as the Wild won, 5-2. Seth Eisele had 25 saves on the night.

Wenatchee (31-13-3-1) concludes their seven game homestand this weekend, starting with Coquitlam (13-30-1-3) on Friday night, and Langley (21-15-10-2) on Saturday for “Faith and Family Night”. Group ticket packages for all games are on sale now at the Wild office by calling 509-888-7825.