Penticton, BC: The Penticton Vees (22-7-2-2) had a dominant opening 20 minutes Saturday, but three power-play goals by the Nanaimo Clippers (18-12-3-2) over the final forty sealed their fate in the 4-2 loss.
Taylor Ward opened the scoring 4:14 into the game with a nice rush through the neutral zone before backhanding a shot over Taz Burman to send teddy bears raining down at the South Okanagan Events Centre. The Vees went into the opening intermission with a 1-0 lead, outshooting the Clippers 17-6.
A penalty at the end of the first carried over for Nanaimo and Brady Lynn scored on a power play just 1:12 into the second to tie the game.
Max Crozier added a power-play goal of his own on a one timer from the blue line that beat Adam Scheel through traffic to give the Clippers a 2-1 lead through 40 minutes.
Luke Reid was called for tripped penalties just five seconds after one another and Nanaimo picked up a third power-play goal as Lynn wired home a wrist shot from the slot on another tic-tac-toe play to make it 3-1 Clippers just over eight minutes into the period.
Dakota Boutin showed some nice hand-eye coordination by batting in a puck out of mid air on the power play to make it a 3-1 game with three and a half minutes to go in the game.
With Scheel on the bench for the extra attacker, Parker Colley had three looks at the empty net before finally icing the game to make it 4-2 with 100 seconds left in regulation
The Vees head into the Christmas break on a three-game skid after Saturday’s result. Jonny Tychonick will make his return to the lineup after winning gold with Canada West at the World Junior ‘A’ Challenge in Truro, Nova Scotia Saturday afternoon.
The Vees will begin the second portion of the season with back to back games against the Wenatchee Wild at Town Toyota Centre December 29 and 30.