Just when you start to count them out, they pull you right back in.
Salmon Arm scored a late third period goal to tie the game only to see Vernon reply. Luckily there were still late game heroics in store against the Vernon Vipers in a 4-3 shootout win.
For just the fifth time this season, Salmon Arm opened the scoring as Matthew Verboon passed the puck from behind the net out front to Trevor Adams. The leading goal scorer was able to squeeze his shot inside the right post giving the Silverbacks a 1-0 lead six minutes in.
Vernon would reply on a late power play with Carver Watson slapping a puck past a screened Matthew Armitage.
Olson Werenka opened the second period with a massive hit on former Silverback Josh Latta. The play sent Olson Werenka to the penalty box, but Viper defenceman jumped Werenka behind the Silverbacks goal and took an extra five minute penalty giving Salmon Arm a lengthy power play. Salmon Arm was unable to capitalize, and Vernon made them pay late in the frame. On a power play of their own, Vernon was able to work the puck to Sebastian Streu who alone in the slot sent a one timer into the top right corner.
In the third, Salmon Arm continued to push and were finally rewarded with 4:55 on the clock tying the game at two. Returning from an illness that kept him out all of last weekend, John Little won a race to the corner and poked the puck back to Jonathan Krahn. The Silverback forward was able to slide a puck past Aidan Porter tying the game.
Salmon Arm has had a flair for the dramatics this season, winning three games already when trailing after two periods. Vernon looked to add a loss to the column though and on a broken play with 2:20 left Michael Young slapped a puck past Armitage making it 3-2 Vipers. Making his second BCHL start, it was just the first even strength goal Armitage had allowed. With the net empty, the Silverbacks continued to battle and scored with 9.8 seconds on the clock. A rebound was kicked in front of the crease, and Matthew Verboon was able to tie the game and send it beyond regulation.
In Kal Tire Place, it was the visitors generating the best opportunities with Captain Sol Seibel walking the puck out alone two minutes in. Stopped on the first try, Seibel picked up his rebound but was stopped by the glove of Porter. Less than a minute later Trevor Adams nearly had his second of the game but sent a shot off the post.
To the shooutout the two teams would go, and there it was Salmon Arm giving the the Vipers players a not so tasty treat on Halloween night.
Streu was the first shooter for Vernon but was stopped by a sprawling Armitage. Nick Unruh followed that up scoring his second shootout goal this season.
Up next was Jagger Williamson the Vipers captain. His first attempt wasn’t so good as he overskated the puck at the blue line. He went back to pick the puck up, but the refs blew the play down. After consulting, they allowed Williamson another shot saying the whistle shouldn’t have blown. On his second try, he outwaited Armitage, but the right handed shot waited a bit too long, and from a sharp angle on the right side missed the net.
That set the stage for Matthew Verboon and he didn’t disapoint picking the top right corner and giving Salmon Arm the win in the shootout.
- First time since 2015-16 season Salmon Arm has started a season 2-0 against Vernon
- Fourth win this season when trailing after two periods…first on the road
- First win in an away team’s rink this season
- Two points for Salmon Arm puts them in a tie for second in the division with the West Kelowna Warriors. On tie breakers, Salmon Arm holds the #2 spot while West K is #3. Both are one point back of Merritt with a game in hand.
Tying and winning the game, Matthew Verboon was the well deserved first star. The Silverbacks forward is now a perfect two for two on shootouts this season, and three for three dating back to the pre-season. Verboon also assisted on the opening goal for Trevor Adams to give Salmon Arm a great start on enemy territory. After a six game goal drought, he now has goals in two straight.