Brendan Shinnimin scored two goals to pace the high-flying Tri-City Americans to a 4-0 win over the Everett Silvertips and a 3-0 lead in the best-of-seven playoff series.

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EVERETT — It took the Everett Silvertips 72 games to clinch the final berth in the Western Hockey League playoffs. They are now one loss away from taking only four games to bow out.

Brendan Shinnimin, the WHL’s leading scorer in the regular season, scored his first two goals of the playoffs in a 40-second span in the second period to pace the high-flying Tri-City Americans to a 4-0 win and a 3-0 lead in the best-of-seven series. The Americans can advance to the second round with a win Wednesday night in Everett.

Everett had its best scoring chance in the first period when Patrick Holland, one of three 100-point scorers for the Americans, was slapped with a five-minute major charging penalty and a game misconduct.

The Silvertips, whose improved power play was a major reason they were able to make the postseason, managed only one shot during the five minutes and the momentum swung inexorably toward Tri-City.

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Shinnimin’s 40-second blitz early in the second period was all the Americans needed.

“I had chances the first two games, but they weren’t going in,” Shinnimin said. “I got a couple of good shots off today that went in.”

Everett captain Ryan Murray said Shinnimin, who scored 58 goals and had 134 points in the regular season, needed only seconds and a small opening to show his scoring prowess.

“Two shifts and that’s the game right there,” Murray said. “Those were goals we could have prevented, but there were little lapses in our defense and he took advantage of them.”

Ty Rimmer made 23 saves to pick up the shutout and has now allowed three goals in three playoff games. Adam Hughesman scored an empty-net goal for Tri-City at 18:14 and Justin Feser finished the scoring with a goal at 18:51.

“We had our opportunity on the power play and they did a good job,” Everett coach Mark Ferner said. “If we would have created something, at least had some chances, it might have been different.”

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