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There is something about fire on ice that seems to ignite the Tri-City Americans. After putting up five goals against the Kelowna Rockets in last season's home opener, the Americans kicked off the 2009-10 season in similar fashion.

Brendan Shinnimin scored twice and Drew Owsley stopped 20 shots to lead the Tri-City Americans (1-0-0-0, 2 pts) past the visiting Kelowna Rockets (0-1-1-0, 1 pts) 6-1 in front of 4,812 fans at the Toyota Center in Kennewick. The Rockets, who lost Thursday in Vancouver, dropped their first two games to start the new season. Meanwhile, with the win, the Americans won their ninth straight home opening contest, improving to 14-7-1-0 all-time in home openers.

Installed during the off-season, the Americans wasted little time setting off their new Fat Boys Goal Horn, scoring just 2:29 into the contest. While on the power play, Brooks Macek knocked in a Justin Feser shot out of mid-air. Upon further review, the play was upheld, giving Tri-City the early 1-0 lead. However, both team's offense would stall over the next 20 minutes, as neither side could get into a rhythm.

Finally, at the 9:06 mark of the second period, Tri-City broke through again, this time off the stick of Jordan Messier. With 2:40 remaining in the period, Brendan Shinnimin netted his first goal of the night, giving the Americans some added breathing room. The Rockets' Tyson Barrie scored with 1:00 minute remaining in the period, as Tri-City took a 3-1 lead into the second intermission.

The third period belonged to Tri-City, though, as the Americans outshot the Rockets 16 to 4 over the final 20 minutes of play. They were rewarded for their success, scoring three more times to put the game well out of reach. Owsley, who was the winner in last year's home opener vs. the Rockets, picked up his 8th career win. Meanwhile, Kelowna's Adam Brown finished the night with 29 saves on 35 shots faced.

The Americans, who finished the pre-season with a 20.5% power play, continued to effectively execute on the man-advantage, going 2-for-6, while holding the Rockets scoreless on 4-of-5 power play opportunities.

Tri-City will hit the ice again this Friday, September 25, as they host the Portland Winterhawks. Game time is 7:05 p.m. at Toyota Center. Tri-City went 6-3 against the ‘Hawks last season. But, the revived ‘Hawks took down the Americans in their lone pre-season match-up, a 6-4 victory during the Red Lion Hotels Pre-Season Tournament in Kennewick. Tickets are available through all Ticketmaster outlets, including all Fred Meyer locations, the Toyota Center box office, or online at ticketmaster.com. Those unable to make it to the game can catch all the action live on NewsTalk 870 AM, starting with the Sterling Savings Bank Warm-up Show at 6:45 p.m.
 
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