Penticton Vees lose their first 2021 season game with a 3-2 defeat to the Trail Smoke Eaters

Vees take first loss

The Penticton Vees tried hard to bring home another win on Wednesday night, throwing 42 shots on goal, but Trail Smoke Eaters goaltender Logan Terness stood strong with 40 saves throughout the game. The Vees fell for the first time in the 2021 season with a 3-2 loss at the South Okanagan Events Centre.

Trail would be the first on the scoreboard with just under a minute and a half into the game as Quinn Disher pushed the visiting Smoke Eaters ahead by a 1-0 score. Disher snuck through the glove side of Vees goal tender Kaeden Lane.

The Smoke Eaters doubled up their advantage soon after, with Ryan Helliwell gathering a loose puck in the left face-off circle and snapping a shot past the glove side of Lane at the 13:38 mark of the opening period.

The Vees pressed forward to try and get on the scoreboard in the opening 20 minutes with a few good chances but could not beat Smoke Eaters netminder Logan Terness.

The home side continued to put pressure on in the second period, firing 15 shots on goal without any success, as Terness and the Smoke Eaters stood tall, in particular on a chance that affiliate player Levi Carter had to score his first BCHL goal.

Carter took a Ryan Upson pass in the left face-off circle and he sent a shot to the glove side of Terness but the Smoke Eaters goaltender was able to get his glove on it and keep the puck out of the goal, keeping their 2-0 advantage heading into the third period.

In the last period, Liam Malmquist took advantage of a five-on-three penalty play and was able to give the Vees their first goal of the game. Malmquist was able to get his shot on on the blocker side of Terness for his second goal of the season just 37 seconds in.

As hard as the Vees pushed for another goal, Terness turned aside 12 of 14 shots thrown his way in the period.

The Smoke Eaters later took advantage of an empty net, with Brady Hunter pushing the puck into the open goal at the 18:27 mark of the final period, giving Trail a 3-1 advantage into the final minute of play.

The final push of the game had Ryan McGuire slide it across the goal line for his fourth goal of the season with 56 seconds remaining in the final period to make it a 3-2.

The Vees could not find the back of the net again in the final moments and dropped their first game of the 2021 season. Lane stopped 24 of the 26 shots he faced in his first loss of the season while Terness was outstanding in the Smoke Eaters crease, turning aside 40 of the 42 shots he faced in his third win of the season.

The Vees return to action with another back-to-back battle as they face-off against the Cranbrook Bucks on Thursday night at the South Okanagan Events Centre. Puck drop is slated for 7 p.m.

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