Salmon Arm, B.C. — The Silverbacks were shut out 2-0 by the Vernon Vipers on Saturday night at the Shaw Centre.
Their record now stands at 19-10-2, good for third place at the moment in the Interior Division.
The Vipers came out pressuring early and often, leading to a goal 3:32 into the game. Defenceman Trey Taylor banked a shot off the end boards for forward Elan Bar-Lev-Wise, who chipped a puck off the post and in from the goal line.
Vernon kept the pressure on after the goal, out-shooting the Backs 10-0 over the course of the first 10 or so minutes, but Backs netminder Ethan Langenegger stood tall. Salmon Arm started to get their legs going in the latter half of the period, but found themselves down 1-0 after 20 minutes and trailing 12-8 in shots on goal.
In the second period, the Backs came out much stronger, but this time Reilly Herbst stood his ground. Langenegger was also tested several times as the game began to open up. With just over six and a half minutes to go in the period, Langenegger made an unbelievable glove stop on Vipers captain Connor Marritt to keep the game at 1-0.
A few minutes later, Vernon would capitalize on a rebound opportunity, after forward Dawson Holt whipped a puck top shelf from the slot to make it 2-0.
The third period continued to be tight with both teams getting chances and both goalies standing tall. With things coming down to the wire, the Backs pulled the goalie for the extra attacker and Noah Wakeford had a glorious chance on the doorstep with two minutes to go, but Herbst stretched out with his glove to make a brilliant save.
That was as close as the Backs would come to breaking the shutout, as the final score was 2-0 for the visitors. In the end, Salmon Arm outshot Vernon 34-31.
Ethan Langenegger, Salmon Arm Silverbacks: Langenegger was again even better than the numbers showed on Saturday, simply because so many of his stops were on point blank chances. The Kamloops native finished with 29 saves on 31 shots and still carries an impressive .921 SV% on the season, despite the team’s November struggles. Langenegger was also making his 12th start in the team’s last 14 games.
Reilly Herbst, Vernon Vipers: Herbst was phenomenal in this game as well, especially late in the game when the Backs were really pressing. He now carries an 11-2 record, 1.98 G.A.A and .929 SV%.
Logan Shaw, Salmon Arm Silverbacks: Shaw provided a ton of energy on Saturday and created some solid offensive chances as well.
For the full boxscore, click here.
STAT OF THE GAME
Silverbacks Shut Out: Saturday was the first time this season the Backs have been shutout. The goals have dried up as of late, with just six goals in the team’s last five games.
The Silverbacks head to the Island for the first time next weekend, playing a 3-in-3. On Friday, they take on the Nanaimo Clippers, on Saturday they take on the Alberni Valley Bulldogs and on Sunday they face off against the Cowichan Valley Capitals. Friday and Saturday’s games are set for 7 p.m. and Sunday’s game is scheduled for 2 p.m.
All games can be heard on 91.5 EZ Rock with the pre-game show starting 30 minutes before puck drop. Fans can also stream the games on HockeyTV.