Warriors tame Apes, pull even with Vees
Two streaks came to an end in Salmon Arm Tuesday in the West Kelowna Warriors 5-2 win over the Silverbacks.
The win snapped the Warriors three game winless streak and put a halt to the Silverbacks five game winning streak.
The victory also pulled the Warriors even with the Penticton Vees atop the Interior Division standings. It's the first time the Warriors have sat atop the division since the beginning of November.
Five different Warriors scored in a game the visitors dominated from start to finish.
Liam Blackburn and Ben Tegtmeyer each had a goal and two assists to pace the Warriors.
Matt Anholt, Taki Pantziris with what proved to be the winner and Seb Lloyd also scored for the Warriors.
Cody Porter, who started in place of Andy Desautels who did not dress Tuesday, stopped 24 shots for his fifth win of the season.
The 16-year-old rookie is unbeaten in his last four starts (3-0-1-0).
Blackburn and Anholt gave the Warriors a 2-0 first period lead. Pantziris with a laser beam from the point and Tegtmeyer on a power-play doubled the lead to 4-0 seven minutes into the second.
Taylor Maruya in the second and Nick Josephs in the third pulled the Silverbacks to within two but, with Anholt in the box serving a four minute high sticking minor and Salmon Arm threatening to draw closer, Lloyd dashed any comeback hopes.
Lloyd broke in all alone and beat Silverbacks backup Kyle Michalovsky a minute into the four minute power-play to put the game out of reach.
The goals was Lloyd's first shorthanded goal of the season and his first of any kind in nine games.
The Warriors (29-13-3-3) and Vees (29-13-2-4) are tied atop the Interior Division with 64 points apiece. Both are five points better than the third place Vernon Vipers and eight better than fourth place Salmon Arm.
West Kelowna and Penticton both hold a game in hand on their nearest pursuers.
Both teams have 10 games remaining in the regular season. The Warriors have five at home and five on the road while the Vees play six of their 10 on home ice.
The Vees can move back into sole possession of top spot Wednesday when they host the cellar dwelling Trail Smoke Eaters.
The Warriors extended three game road swing continues this weekend in Merritt Friday and Prince George Saturday.
They are not home again until next Tuesday when they entertain the Merritt Centennials.
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