Salmon Arm, BC – The 2022/23 BCHL Regular Season kicked off on Friday night, as one of the leagues great rivalries was renewed when the Salmon Arm Silverbacks welcomed the Vernon Vipers into the Shaw Centre. It was the first of a home and home series between the two clubs, as they will battle it out again tomorrow night at Kal Tire Place in Vernon.
Between the pipes, it was Matthew Tovell getting his first career BCHL Regular Season start. He looked very impressive through three pre-season games, going 3-0-0, with 1 shutout and boasting a .962 save percentage. On the other side of the ice, it was Roan Clarke getting the start for the Vipers, who is entering his third season in Vernon.
The 2022/23 Silverbacks were welcomed to the ice in style as the 25 players were announced to the energetic Silverbacks crowd. The Silverbacks had two quick penalties as they opened up the frame, but were able to kill them both off in quick succession. Midway through the period, Salmon Arm grabbed momentum as they went to the man advantage and held possession in the Vipers end for all two minutes. The period ended scoreless as both goalies looked sharp.
The Second period was an impressive one for the Silverbacks. The two teams battled back and fourth until Isaac Lambert opened the scoring after a great pass from Connor Welsh. After the teams went back and fourth in the penalty box, it was Silverbacks Captain, Nathan Mackie, breaking through and getting one past Clark to make it 2-0. The shorthanded marker was the lone special teams goal of the evening. The Vipers applied the pressure late in the second, but Matthew Tovell stood tall, and helped keep the two goal lead.
The third period was one for the goalies, as both Matthew Tovell, and Roan Clarke were perfect in the net. It wasn’t until late in third when Ethan Ullrick was able to seal the deal for the Silverbacks as he added one into the empty net. The Silverbacks took this one by a final, of a 3-0.
Catch tomorrow night’s games from Kal Tire Place for a 6:00PM puck drop.