WEST KELOWNA, B.C. – The West Kelowna Warriors got a pair of goals from newcomer Lucas Cullen to push them to a 4-3 victory over the Penticton Vees on Friday night at Royal LePage Place.
The night started off with plenty of jump for both sides and was a back and forth contest until the media timeout where the Vees applied some pressure and opening the scoring in the game at the 10:44 mark of the opening frame.
Jackson Keane took a loose puck from the left-wing side and was able to walk to the front of the net and slide it five hole on Warriors netminder Cole Demers to give the Vees a 1-0 lead and stand up as the lone goal in a fast-paced opening period.
The Warriors tied the game around the midway point of the 2nd period as at the 7:09 mark, a new face in the Warriors lineup made a good first impression. Lucas Cullen tallied his first BCHL goal on a scramble in front of the net on the blocker side of the Vees goaltender Adam Scheel and tied the game at one a piece.
Penticton got the lead back at the 8:24 mark of the 2nd period as just 1:25 after the Cullen goal, Taylor Ward wheeled up the high slot and wristed a shot over the glove side of Demers to restore a one-goal advantage for the Vees.
The scoring continued in the 2nd period with the Warriors tying the game once more at the 12:43 mark with Jordan Todd collecting his first goal of the season. Todd whacked home a loose puck in the slot off a broken play that trickled across the goal line past Scheel on the glove side for a 2-2 tie.
The Warriors earned their first lead of the night at the 13:17 mark, just 34 seconds after tying the game, with Cullen scoring his 2nd goal of the period. The new coming forward Cullen picked up the puck in the left face-off circle and fired a shot over Scheel to give the Warriors a 3-2 advantage heading into the final period.
The 3rd period started with plenty of Warriors pressure, holding a one-goal lead and outshooting the Vees 12-3 at the media timeout in final period of play but the Vees battled to get the game tied at the 13:40 mark.
Cassidy Bowes made a power move to the outside and cut back to the inside to get to the front of the net and outwaited Demers on the blocker side to slide the puck past him and get the game to 3-3 in the latter stages of the period.
The Warriors didn’t waste much time after that in getting the lead back as just 59 seconds after the Bowes goal, Michael Lombardi scored the eventual game winner at the 14:39 in the final period. Chase Dubois fanned on a shot from the left circle but spun and backhanded a pass in front for Lombardi, who tapped in the loose puck for his 4th goal of the season and a 4-3 lead and eventual final score in favour of the Warriors.
Cole Demers turned aside 29 of the 32 shots he faced in the game for his 6th victory of the season while Adam Scheel stopped 38 saves on 42 shots for his 5th loss of the season.