Who: Salmon Arm SilverBacks vs. Vernon Vipers
When: Friday, August 23rd, 7:00 pm
Where: Shaw Centre, Salmon Arm
The SilverBacks play in front of a home crowd for the first time this season when they welcome the Vernon Vipers to Shaw Centre this evening. Salmon Arm dropped a close, 2-1 decision in Merritt last night in a game that saw many regulars watching from the stands. Connor Brown-Maloski got his pre-season started on the right foot, deflecting home a power-play goal for the 'Backs only marker while 17 year-old goaltender Kyle Michalovsky made 24 saves in a strong effort between the pipes.
Tonight, the new faces in SilverBacks camp will get a taste of what the Salmon Arm/Vernon rivalry is all about, and even though there are no points up for grabs in the standings, be certain that tonight's game won't be lacking in intensity. Places among the SilverBacks' final roster are still up for grabs, and to a man these players know that making an impression on the coaching staff against the team's biggest rival could be a great way to secure their spot.
After dressing a younger lineup last night, the 'Backs could see some veteran faces start to trickle back into active duty this evening. With three full days of camp and three exhibition games in the space of six days, last night's fixture in Merritt afforded an opportunity for a few players to catch their breath.
Last Meeting: Alex Gillies potted a goal and an assist, and Adam Clark made 28 saves as the SilverBacks closed out their 2012-13 regular-season home schedule with a 3-2 victory February 22nd at Shaw Centre.
Our Opponent: Perhaps nowhere in the BCHL is there more pressure on a team than in Vernon. After missing the playoffs for the past two seasons, the Vipers will host the RBC Cup next May, and will certainly want to put on a good show at home in Junior "A" hockey's marquee event. Trades that saw Adam Tambellini and Aaron Hadley leave the North Okanagan last January have netted fruitful results in former Eagles sniper Demico Hannoun and ex-Nanaimo veterans Michael McNicholas and Josh Bryan. Local Brendan Persley returns for his overage season, and fourth as a Viper while 20 year-olds Ryan Renz and Jason Bird will be counted on as anchors on the back end.