PENTICTON, BC- “Mr. Overtime,” made his playoff debut Saturday, as Scott Conway scored six-minutes into extra time, as the Penticton Vees came from behind to beat West Kelowna 3-2, in Game Two of the Interior Division Final.
The Vees now lead the best-of-seven series 2-0, with the series shifting to Royal LePage Place Monday night for Game Three.
Conway not only scored the game-winner but he also scored the game-tying goal with 58-seconds left in regulation to force OT. Demico Hannoun scored the other goal in regulation for the Vees and Zach Driscoll stopped 23 of 25 shots to remain undefeated in the post-season.
Kyle Marino and Quinn Foreman scored in regulation for the Warriors, who were oh so close from earning a series split. Matt Greenfield took the loss in goal, despite a 40-save performance and second star honours.
Conway, who scored four overtime goals in the regular season, banked in the game-winner off a defenseman’s skate from below the goal-line, and through Greenfield’s legs at 5:57 of OT.
The Warriors took a page out of the Vees’ script, scoring early in game two and it was their power-play getting them ahead. Two-minutes into the first, the Warriors’ Captain, Kyle Marino banged in a rebound at the top of the crease at 2:03.
The first period was highlighted by special teams, as the Vees were handed four power-plays, including a full two-minute five-on-three, but they couldn’t cash in; well they thought they did.
During their two-man advantage, it appeared Dante Fabbro’s point-shot squirted underneath the goalie’s leg and over the goal-line, but after a short discussion, the referees waved it off.
Penticton did eventually tie things up in the opening seconds of the middle stanza on Hannoun’s first of the playoffs. The 20-year-old raced down the left-wing, cut to the middle, then fired a rocket over the goalie’s glove to bring the crowd to their feet, 18-seconds in.
West Kelowna found themselves in more penalty trouble in the second, handing the Vees three more power-plays but the home team couldn’t capitalize. The Warriors penalty-kill flexed its muscles, going a perfect seven-for-seven in the game, on the back of Greenfield’s goaltending.
The tables were turned in the third period, as it was the Vees running into serious penalty trouble. Easton Brodzinski and Colton Poolman each were dinged with four-minute high-sticking penalties 30-seconds apart. That resulted in a three and a half minutes of five-on-three power-play time for the Warriors, but it was the Vees’ PK standing strong.
Despite a boisterous ovation from the crowd for killing off the extended West Kelowna power-play, the Vees found themselves down a goal shortly thereafter.
Penticton turned the puck over behind their net and Quinn Foreman one-timed a feed out of the corner and past Driscoll’s blocker at 8:22.
The Vees did regroup and that set the stage for Conway’s late game and overtime heroics.
Final Score: 3-2 (OT) Vees
Shots: 43-25 Vees
Power-Plays: Vees 0-7 Warriors 1-3
Three Stars: 1) Scott Conway 2) Matt Greenfield 3) Demico Hannoun
Conway now has nine goals and 15 points in his seven-game point streak, which started on the opening night of the playoffs. Jost has points in seven straight games with his third period assist. Zach Driscoll improved to 5-0 after tonight’s win and is 7-1 against the Warriors this season.
The series moves to West Kelowna for Game Three and Four, starting Monday night, March 21st, at Royal LePage Place; face-off is 7 pm. Listen to the game on EZ Rock AM 800, or watch online at www.fasthockey.com