Recap of the West Kelowna Warriors first weekend of the 2021 season
The West Kelowna Warriors BCHL Pod Season got underway Saturday night with a matchup against the Salmon Arm Silverbacks. The Warriors had chances early to take advantage of a Silverbacks steam that played the night before. Seeing the game’s first two power plays the Warriors were unable to find the back of the net.
The teams played evenly through the rest of the first and second periods. Trading chances and power play opportunities but the score would stay knotted at zero through forty minutes. Warriors goaltender Zach Bennett was mainly the reason why the score remained 0-0.
Just past the six minute mark of the third period the Silverbacks capitalized on their fourth chance with the man advantage. Sullivan Mack ‘s wrister from the top of the face off circle eluded a screened Zachary Bennett.
The Warriors responded on a powerplay of their own. A beautiful tic-tac-toe style passing play finished off by newcomer Benjamin Woodhouse. The Warriors captured the lead with just over a minute left in regulation. An outlet pass from Zach Brooks landed on Carter Wilke’s stick sending him in on a partial break away. Wilkie protected the puck and drove hard to the net scoring what proved to be the game winner.
The West Kelowna Warriors costly turnovers leads to a 5-3 loss to the Vernon Vipers Sunday afternoon.
It was a great start for the Warriors with Cameron Hicklin scoring his first BCHL goal only 2 minutes into the game to make it 1-0 Warriors. It was a simple tip pass from Riley Sharun to Ben Woodhouse who was then able to thread the needle finding Hicklin right near the crease to beat Vipers goalkeeper James Porter Jr. Late in the period the Vipers would strike on a 5 on 3. A pass from Nick Remissong allowed Nick Kent to blast a slap shot from the point past Warriors goaltender Johnny Derrick to tie the game at one heading into the second frame.
The second period started with the Warriors on the powerplay but a costly turnover led to a shorthanded goal from Jojo Tanaka-Campbell only 1:38 into period 2. Late in the period Tyson Jugnauth would cough up the puck in the attacking zone leading to Cameron MacDonald to find an open Seth Bafaro to extend the lead to 3-1 with only 3 minutes remaining in the period. The Warriors would get a late tally with only 11 seconds to go when Cameron Hicklin scored his 2nd of the game cutting the lead to only one.
The Warriors got off to the start they needed with a quick power play goal from Carter Wilkie off a Nick Ardanaz feed to tie the game up at three with under 17 minutes remaining in regulation. It wouldn’t take the Vipers long to restore the lead with Jojo Tanaka Campbell scoring his second of the hockey game only 2 minutes later. The Warriors would get a much needed power play with only 7 minutes remaining but yet another costly turnover led to Cam MacDonald scoring the Vipers insurance goal of the game putting the game out of reach. 5-3 Vipers final.
The Warriors are back in action this Thursday and Friday afternoon. Thursday will be against the Salmon Arm Silverbacks and Friday against the Vernon Vipers. Puck drop at 1:00pm for both games. Warriors fans can enjoy each game on BCHLTV (formally HockeyTV) or on the free internet radio stream on Mixlr.