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Offence Explodes, Backs Force Game 5

WEST KELOWNA, BC: The Salmon Arm Silverbacks scored three goals in a five-minute span to begin the third period as they defeated the West Kelowna Warriors 5-1 on the road in Game 4 to force a Game 5 Friday night in Salmon Arm.

In the first period, the Silverbacks got off to the start they wanted in Game 4. They peppered Warrior goaltender Johnny Derrick with 14 shots in the first period. Daniel Panetta got the first grade a chance in the game as he let go a hard shot from the slot that was stopped. After that, the Silverbacks ramped up the pressure as the Warriors didn’t record a shot for eight minutes. Despite outshooting the Warriors 11-4 at the time, it was the home team opening the scoring with a bit of a lucky goal as Felix Trudeaus shot was directed off Elan Bar-Lev-Wise and in past Say. The Backs pushed back after the marker with chances from Noah Serdachny and Nathan Morin, but they too couldn’t solve Derrick as he stopped all 14 shots he faced in the first period. The Silverbacks outshot the Warriors 14-7 in the opening twenty minutes.

In the second period the Silverbacks kept the pressure on the Warriors and were finally rewarded for it. Brandon Santa Juana entered the offensive zone and feathered a beautiful backdoor pass to a wide-open Zack Smith, who proceeded to tap it home for his 4th of the playoffs and, more importantly, tying the game at 1. After the goal, the Backs had a few more chances to take the lead one came off the stick of Ethan Ullrick, but he was turned aside by Derrick. The Warriors got the first powerplay of the hockey game as Backs defenceman Lucas Matta slashed the stick out of the hands of Tyler Cristall. Despite a couple of good looks on the man advantage, Say and Co. was able to kill it off. After that penalty kill, the Backs gained momentum as they created a couple more odd-man rushes. The Backs took their first lead in the hockey game with 2:56 left in the middle frame. Smith again received a pass from Santa Juana, and he moved to the backhand and roofed it past Derrick for his 5th of the playoffs and gave the Backs a 2-1 lead. With 30 seconds left in the middle frame, the Backs were down a man again as Isaac Lambert was called for tripping. The Warriors outshot the Silverbacks 16-12 in the second period.

The Warriors started the third period on the powerplay for the first 1:30. The Silverbacks didn’t allow a shot and killed off the penalty. After the kill, The Silverbacks got the offence rolling, striking three times in five minutes. First, Tucker Hartmann came around the net, spun, and ripped it past Derrick short side, doubling the Silverbacks lead. Three minutes later, Smith centred a pass to Santa Juana, and he directed it into the net past Derrick giving the Silverbacks a 4-1 lead. Finally, Daniel Panetta picked up a pass from Isaac Lambert, and he beat Derrick five-hole. The goal chased Derrick after he allowed five goals on 29 shots. In the two previous games, he allowed just two combined. Justin Katz came on in relief. He stopped all seven shots he faced in relief. Owen Say had an excellent bounce-back effort stopping 32 of 33 in the win. The Silverbacks save their season and force a Game 5 Friday night inside the Shaw Centre in what should be an incredible atmosphere. Puck drop is 7:00 PM.