Vipers drop home opener
Sep 16, 2012 / 8:02 am
The Salmon Arm Silverbacks spoiled the Vernon Vipers BCHL home opener Saturday night with a 3-2 overtime win.
Josh Bowes converted a rebound of a Ryan Simpson shot 1:53 in overtime to give the Silverbacks their first win of the season.
For the Vipers, it was a game of missed opportunities as they out shot the visitors 40-23 and missed several chances to run away with the game in the first period.
Goalie Matt Clark kept his team in the contest with a series of saves in the opening 20 minutes, most notably on a Colton Sparrow breakaway and a Mitch VanTeeling partial break.
The Vipers did capitalize on a strange play at 3:39. While battling during a face off in the Silverback zone, Mike Roberts backhanded the puck, which fluttered up, over, and then behind Clark.
The two teams continued the physical intensity that had characterized their contest in Salmon Arm on Friday. Colton Sparrow and Kevin Guiltinan were the recipients of hits that sent them to the dressing room for several minutes. Both later returned to action.
Jason Trott, a favourite Viper target, was levelled by Geoff Crisfield in the first period and by Ryan Renz in the second.
In what Viper head man Jason Williamson called “a concerted lack of focus and intensity,” the Vipers let the Silverbacks into the contest in the second period and the visitors took a 2-1 lead.
A pair of undisciplined Viper penalties gave the ‘Backs a two man advantage, which they converted at 12:46. A Jason Trott point shot deflected off Troy Petrick and past Austin Smith into the Viper net.
Then, two weak clearing attempts by the Vipers’ fourth line at the end of the second period led to Salmon Arm's second goal. Jeff Kennedy banged in a rebound with less than a second remaining in the period.
The Vipers dominated the third period, but managed just a single goal, from a great effort by Aaron Hadley.
At full throttle, he took a pass from Pierce Eviston outside the Salmon Arm blue line, faked left, veered to the centre and buried a wrister from 30 feet at 13:02.
Each team had a chance in the tightly played overtime period. The Vipers were unable to get the puck through to Clark, and Ryan Simpson broke out with two Viper defenders back.
Simpson’s slap shot was parried by Austin Smith, but Josh Bowes swooped in to fire the rebound past Smith for the win.
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