The Silverbacks (15-19-1-2) will play their final game of 2016 tonight as they host the Vernon Vipers (18-13-2-3) at 7pm at the Shaw Centre in Salmon Arm.

The Vipers have won four of the first five games of the seven game regular season series, as the Silverbacks fell 4-2 in Vernon last night. The home team scored the only goal of the opening period on Friday, and in the final 32 seconds. The Vipers outshot the Silverbacks 21-11. Vernon outscored the Silverbacks 3-1 in the second period.

Elijiah Barriga’s 18th, a highlight reel goal tied the game 1-1 at 5:46 of the second. But back-to-back penalties just 12 seconds apart gave the Vipers a lengthy 5-on-3 power-play, Carter Stephenson for tripping at 8:54 and Hayden Hopkins for slashing at 9:06. Vernon cashed in at 10:09 to retake the lead and went ahead 4-1 with back-to-back goals at 13:49 and 17:03.

The Vipers outshot the Silverbacks 13-11.

Carter Cochrane scored the final goal of the game, his seventh at 6:47 to get the visitors within two. The Silverbacks lead 9-7 on the shot clock in the third, Vernon outshot Salmon Arm 41-31 total. The Silverbacks power-play was 0-for-5, the penalty-kill finished 5-for-6.

The Silverbacks fell 7-3 in Vernon on December 14th, the two teams tied 4-4 in Salmon Arm on December 9th. And the Vipers began the season series with back-to-back victories, 5-3 in Vernon on September 10th and 6-3 in Salmon Arm on September 9th.

Salmon Arm is now 4-2-1-1 in December, 5-9-1-1 on home ice, and 10-11-1-1 in the Interior. The Vipers are 5-1-2-0 in the final month of 2016, Vernon is 8-10-2-2 on the road and 11-6-2-1 within the division.

The Silverbacks will visit Vernon on Friday, January 13th at 7pm. Salmon Arm will begin the New Year next Friday, January 6th at the Trail Smoke Eaters (16-17-0-4) at 730pm and the Silverbacks will host the Smokies next Saturday, January 7th at 7pm at the Shaw Centre in Salmon Arm.