SALMON ARM, BC– It has been 594 days since the Salmon Arm Silverbacks (1-0-0) have played a meaningful game with fans at the Shaw Centre. Tonight’s Home Opener changes that!. Last year the Backs battled their rival Vernon Vipers (0-1-0) in a shortened 20 game season in a bubble, with nothing to play for at the end of it all. This time around, it’s a whole different story. The Vipers took the season series last year, winning seven of the ten matchups. Although the Backs only won three contests, four went to extra time, and seven of the ten games were decided by two goals or less. Last Saturday, the Silverbacks opened up their season on the road in Merritt with a 3-1 victory. Noah Serdachny, Simon Tassy, and Aidan Lindblad found the scoresheet in the win. The two teams will have a home-and-home this weekend, with the second game in Vernon tomorrow night at 6:00 PM.
Players To Watch
Noah Serdachny: He was a problem for the Vipers a year ago. He produced at a near point per game clip in the ten games head-to-head with nine points. His three goals and six assists led the Backs in scoring against the Vipers.
Simon Tassy: He picked up right where he left off in the preseason, where he scored five times. Tassy scored a BCHL high 16 times in 20 games a year ago; four of them came against the Vipers. In addition, he chipped in with four assists for a total of eight points in ten games. Look for Tassy to continue the hot hand as he and Serdachny seem to be gathering more chemistry.
Owen Say: Out of the ten matchups against Vernon, Say started eight of them. His 3-4-1 record against the Vipers a year ago doesn’t tell the story of how well he played. In five of eight contests, he allowed two or fewer goals, winning three of them. Say finished with a 2.75 GAA and a .904 SV% in those starts. Say will look to get another win for the Silverbacks after stopping 22/23 in last Saturday’s win in Merritt.
A Look At The Opposition.
A year ago, the Vipers had the best record between the Silverbacks and the West Kelowna Warriors, winning 13 of 20 games. The Vipers have a large core of players that have returned for the 2021-22 campaign, 15 to be exact. Ryan Shostak, who led the Vipers in scoring last year with 18 points, JoJo Tanaka-Campbell, Cameron MacDonald, and goaltender Roan Clarke are among the returnees. The Vipers kicked off their season last weekend; like the Silverbacks, they too only had a stand-alone weekend. They travelled to Penticton and were on the losing end of a 4-2 contest. Shostak and Reagan Milburn each scored. Clarke took the loss in goal. Ethan David may get the call for the Vipers tonight; the Silverbacks put four past him early in the preseason.