Vees prove potent on power play, prevail over visiting Powell River
The Powell River Kings’ league-best power play was upstaged by that of the Penticton Vees.
Eric Linell scored two of Penticton’s three power-play markers and Luke Loheit also clicked twice as the Vees trumped the Kings 5-3 in front of 2,924 fans Friday at the South Okanagan Events Centre.
James Miller collected a goal and three assists and continues to lead all BCHL defencemen with 19 goals and 50 points, while captain Massimo Rizzo added two assists for the Vees (26-121-2).
Ryan Brushett notched his league-leading 29th goal and assisted on the others by Levi Glasman and Ethan Schmunk for Powell River (24-15-1).
The Kings, who came in at 26.2 per cent on the power play, scored once with the man advantage.
Derek Krall made 20 saves to win in his first start of 2019, while Mitch Adamyk stopped 35 shots for the Kings.
Defenceman Evan McIntyre and forward Ty Pochipinski — acquired at the Canadian junior hockey trade deadline on Thursday — made their debuts for the Vees.
Linell opened the scoring on a power play at 1:27 from Miller and Rizzo.
Brushett tied it up, extending his points streak to 16 games, as his centering pass glanced in off Miller’s skate at 6:32.
But Miller made up for that on a point shot through traffic just nine seconds into a power play from Linell and Rizzo at 9:24.
The Kings got on a late power play of their own and Glasman tied it up with 47 seconds left.
Penticton controlled play in the second period and took the lead 3-2 as Loheit knocked home a rebound from Miller and David Silye at 3:26.
The Kings tied it against the flow of play as Schmunk was set up by Brushett at 10:35.
Loheit put the Vees up for good at 4-3 on a terrific individual effort, with Cassidy Bowes earning the lone assist at 15:11.
Just 48 seconds into the third, Linell deflected home Miller’s point shot on the power play for his second of the night with Cole Shepard also assisting.
The Vees host another Island Division team tonight with the Nanaimo Clippers invading the SOEC in a 6 p.m. puck-drop.
The Vees also acquired Western Hockey League defenceman Jonathan Smart ahead of the trade deadline, but the 19-year-old from Kelowna will not be eligible to play until the Vees visit Powell River on Jan. 25.
Smart played at the Okanagan Hockey Academy in Penticton for two seasons prior to playing in the WHL for Kelowna, Regina and Kootenay.
VIPERS 4, SILVERBACKS 1
Goals by Coleton Bilodeau, Josh Latta, Connor Marritt and Elan Bar lev wise gave Vernon the win over visiting Salmon Arm at Kal Tire Place.
Matthew Verboon replied for Salmon Arm (19-17-4), who trailed 2-1 and 3-1 at the period breaks. The Vipers outshot the Silverbacks 39-28
Vernon (16-16-7-3) hosts Powell River on Sunday at 2 p.m.
WARRIORS 4, CENTENNIALS 3
Mike Hardman scored 2:33 into overtime for West Kelowna in a road win over Merritt. The Warriors are home to Alberni Valley Bulldogs tonight, 7 p.m. at RLP.
Penticton Vees forward Brendan Harrogate tries to stuff the puck past Powell River Kings goaltender Mitch Adamyk as Kings defenceman Kyle Pow checks him from behind during BCHL action on Friday at the SOEC. The Vees won 5-3.