Vipers in London to Open Round 2 of Playoffs

The LaSalle Vipers are on the road in London Wednesday night for the opening game of their Western Conference semifinal in the Greater Ontario Junior Hockey League.

The Nationals took the season series, 4-2.

LaSalle head coach John Nelson says London is very skilled team.

"Their top two forward lines are excellent and bring a great challenge for us," says Nelson.  "We are going in there (London) to a rink that we haven't done that well this year, but we're going in with a new attitude..it's the playoffs."

The Nationals outscored the Vipers 22-7 in three wins in London.

Nelson says his team must be disciplined and stay out of the penalty box.

"Their power play is explosive and we know we can't be taking penalties for the whole game," says Nelson.  "The less they're on the power play, the more we're playing five-on-five it provides us with a stronger opportunity for us to win the game."

The fifth-seeded Vipers are coming off a four-game sweep of the Sarnia Legionnaires in the opening round.

Nelson says Will Tragge will get the start in goal in Game 1.

"Will Tragge has been real solid for us all year, so has Jackson Bernard," says Nelson.  "But Will is an older guy and has a little more experience than Jackson."

Tragge was 2-0 against the Legionnaires and had a goals-against average of 2.00 and a .946 save percentage.

Game 2 in the series goes Friday night at the Vollmer Centre at 7pm.