West Kelowna Score Win To Spoil Merritt’s Home Opener

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Jon Zacks

September 15, 2013, West Kelowna, BC (ISN) – The Warriors rode a third period surge to complete a weekend sweep of the Centennials on Saturday.

A night after a 3-2 win in their first home game, the Warriors hung on for a 4-3 victory in Merritt.

Tied 1-1 after a somewhat pedestrian first two periods, the Warriors got the best of a wild third period. Braxton Bilous, newcomer Tyson Dallman, and Matt Anholt all scored in the final frame, after Carl Hesler had notched his first BCHL goal seven minutes into the game.

“Great feeling watching it go in” Hesler grinned after the game. “The past couple of games have been frustrating, I’ve had some chances but just couldn’t bury” he says, adding “Definitely nice watching that one go in and celebrating with the linemates.”

Hesler was also a key part of the Warriors penalty kill, as the visitors clung to the lead late in the game.

Merritt would claw to within a goal on Jeff Wight’s second powerplay goal of the night with three minutes remaining. But the Warriors were solid from there on out, and earned the second win of the young season.

Special teams numbers favoured Merritt in the game, with the Cents scoring all three of their goals on the powerplay (3/5).

The Warriors were 1/4 on the man advantage, and now sit at 3/25 (12%) on the season.

However, Hesler insists that his team is doing a better job than the numbers would suggest. “I think, honestly, the powerplay’s doing everything but score.” Also a key penalty-killer for the Tribe, Hesler maintains that special teams will be a strength of his team this year. “It’s coming along” he says. “I think we’re going to get our numbers up there.”

Final shots counted 30-23 in favour of West Kelowna, with Andy Desautels earning his second win as a Warrior. Russell Sanderson suffered his first loss of the year in the Merritt net.

A string of divisional matchups will continue next week for the Warriors. The Tribe will host Vernon on Tuesday evening, before a home-and-home series against Salmon Arm on the weekend.

Find the full interview with Carl Hesler and much more at  The General’s Report.

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