The West Kelowna Warriors used a three goal third period to pick up a big win on the road with a 4-2 victory at Nicola Valley Memorial Arena and sweep the home-and-home set against the Merritt Centennials.
The Cents opened the scoring, as they did on Friday night, with a nice pass from behind the goal courtesy of Stephen Seeger. The 20-year-old forward centered the pass for Nick Fidanza in the right circle who buried it past Warrior netminder Shane Farkas for the 1-0 lead at the 6:53 mark of the 1st period.
The Warriors got the game tied at the 11:16 mark of the period after a power play gave them some momentum and they capitalized on the opportunity. Much like the Merritt goal, Cavin Tilsley passed out to the blocker side of Centennials goaltender Jake Berger and Jon Russell was right there for the pass and banged the puck in for his 3rd goal of the season and a 1-1 tie at the period came to an end.
The Cents got the lead back at the 13:17 mark on the power play as Zachary Bleuler fired in a one timer from the left point and one of the 15 shots the Centennials fired toward net in the 2nd period beat Farkas for the 2-1 Merritt lead.
The 2nd period would end with the Cents 2-1 lead after 15 shots on goal and Farkas making 14 saves in the period and 22 overall while Jake Berger stopped all of the 12 shots thrown his way and 22 of the 23 he faced in the game at that point.
The Warriors got some big saves in the 3rd period from Farkas before tying the game at the 12:35 mark of the 3rd period as Quin Foreman passed the puck through the slot for an onrushing Stephen Kleysen, who tipped the puck past the glove side of Berger for his 4th goal of the season and a 2-2 tie.
The Warriors snatched their first lead of the game at the 16:39 mark of the final period as West Kelowna tallied on their third power play of the game. The puck was brought into the offensive zone and dropped back to Michael Ryan, making no mistake on his wrist shot on the glove side for his 6th goal of the season and the Warriors first lead of the weekend at 3-2.
West Kelowna iced the game away with an empty net goal at the 19:41 mark as Braiden Epp was fed in from the left side by Quin Foreman and buried it for his 10th goal of the season and now has games in four straight games and gave the Warriors a scrappy 4-2 victory on the road.
FINAL SCORE: 4-2 Warriors
SHOTS ON GOAL: 38-30 Centennials
PP: Warriors (1/3) Centennials (1/3)
3 STARS: 1) Michael Ryan (1-0-1)
2) Jacob Berger (26 saves on 29 shots)
3) Shane Farkas (35 saves on 37 shots)
The Warriors (15-16-0-1) are back in action on Friday, December 16th at Royal LePage Place with the Powell River Kings in town for their 2nd to last game before the Christmas break. It’s also the Warriors Teddy Bear Toss as fans are encouraged to bring a new or gently used stuffed teddy bear to the game that fans can throw on the ice after the Warriors first goal. Puck drop is 7:00 PM