SALMON ARM, BC- The Salmon Arm Silverbacks will welcome the first-place West Kelowna Warriors to town for the first of back-to-back games at the Shaw Centre. The Backs are fresh off gutting out a 4-2 road victory in Vernon, on the backs of two Daniel Panetta goals and Owen Say’s 23 stops. They will look to start a new winning streak tonight after their seven gamer was snapped last weekend at the hands of the Cranbrook Bucks, who handed the Silverbacks their first two regulation losses. Tonight, is the first of five matchups between the Warriors and the Silverbacks. They played twice in the preseason, with both home teams winning 4-1 games.
Players to Watch:
Simon Tassy: Tassy torched the Warriors last season in the Vernon Pod with 14 goals in 10 games. He’s leading the Silverbacks in goals (13), points (20), shorthanded goals (2), and game-winning goals (4) so far this season.
Nathan Morin: Two of the five goals he scored in the preseason came against the Warriors. Morin has five points in 13 games and will start with Mat Bourgault and Daniel Panetta.
Brandon Santa Juana: Sits third in team scoring with 14 points in 13 games. Santa Juana scored a powerplay goal in Wednesday night’s 4-2 win over the Vipers. He is slotted to again play on the top line with Noah Serdachny and Simon Tassy.
A Look At The Opposition
The Warriors are coming into tonight’s contest one of the hottest teams in the BCHL. They have won seven in a row and are coming off a weekend where they swept a pair of games vs Wenatchee and picked up a 4-1 victory over Vernon Saturday night. During this stretch, the Warriors have outscored their opponents, 35-18, nine coming in a 9-2 win over Merrit. Felix Trudeau has led the way up front for the Warriors with 19 points in 13 games. Johnny Derrick is off to a good start in between the pipes for the Warriors with a 9-1 record and boasts a 2.66 GAA and a .917 SV%. The Shaw Centre has been a tough building for the Warriors; they have lost their last ten contests in Salmon Arm.