PK sinks Warriors

The West Kelowna Warriors turned out to the the perfect tonic for a couple of teams looking to break into the win column.

Friday night, it was the Merritt Centennials.

Saturday, back at Royal LePage Place, the Trail Smoke Eaters.

Entering the game 0-5-1-0, the Smokies had held a lead for all of 17 minutes in six games. They led much of the way Saturday in a convincing 5-1 win over a Warriors team also struggling to find their way.

Simply put, the Smoke Eaters, despite a long night of travel from Wenatchee looked like the fresher team. They look liked they wanted it more from the opening faceoff.

"They came out and they played harder," said Warriors head coach Brandon West.

"That's the first time that we have been down right off the get go. We have to find a way to answer that, and unfortunately tonight we didn't have an answer back."

For all intents and purposes, the Smoke Eaters put this one away in the first period, building a 3-0 lead with three consecutive power play goals.

They were never really challenged after that.

"We need to have more urgency in our game, especially the penalty kill.

"We can't be going four-for-six on a night. The calls are the calls and we have to find a way to get through them and we have to find a way to kill them and gain momentum."

Brandon Dent did give the Warriors a bit of a spark with his fourth goal of the season late in the opening period, but it didn't give the Warriors the boost they needed to take the game over on their own sheet of ice.

Defenceman Diarmad DiMurro and Owen Ozar each had a goal and two assists for the Smokies. Tyler Ghirardosi had a pair of goals while Kent Johnson picked up four assists.

Trail finished the night four-for-six with the man advantage. The Warriors failed to score on their four opportunities.

Brock Baier started the night in goal, but was lifted in favour of rookie Johnny Derrick after allowing three goals on 12 shots.

Asked if there was anything positive he could take away, West replied simply, no!

"We need to be better to a man. We'll refocus our game and get ready for Tuesday night."

The Warriors will host the Salmon Arm Silverbacks Tuesday before back-to-back games with the Vees Friday in Penticton and Saturday back at RLP.

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