By Kyle Anderson
The West Kelowna Warriors got the overtime winner from Kylar Hope just 4:49 into the extra frame on Saturday night at Royal LePage Place, knotting up their Best-of-7 series with the Salmon Arm Silverbacks at a game apiece with a 2-1 victory.
Both goaltenders were strong early on in the hockey game, but it was the Warriors who drew first blood in the opening period. Jonathan Desbiens finished off a fine two on one play with Quin Foreman, beating Angus Redmond under the blocker for the 1-0 lead.
That is how the game would remain all the way to the third period, as each time struggled with a couple of man advantages, and neither team could find the net behind Redmond or Warriors netminder Matthew Greenfield. Redmond made two of the biggest saves of the game in rapid succession as he stymied Desbiens while laying on his stomach in the crease.
Salmon Arm tied the game at one with a goal just over eight minutes into the third, as Ross Heidt’s second of the series beat Greenfield just as a Warriors penalty had expired.
As it did on Friday, the pace to begin overtime was high, and Hope grabbed the puck in his own zone, driving through the middle to throw one towards the ‘Backs net. That shot hit a defenseman, but the rebound went right back to hope who tried again, beating Redmond’s pad down low, sending the Warriors faithful into a frenzy as the players piled over the boards.
The series now shifts to Salmon Arm on Monday night, with puck drop at 7 PM at the Shaw Centre. There is a fan bus going to Salmon Arm for $30, call the Warriors office Monday morning to book your spot at 250-769-7051.
Your sports. Your teams. The ISN Daily Digest.
Sign up to the ISN Daily Digest and sit back while we pick the previous day’s best headlines and speed them straight to your inbox every morning.