Photo Credit: Garrett James

The West Kelowna Warriors get off to an early lead but can’t hold on as the Merritt Centennials pick up their first victory of the season by a score of 4-2 Friday night.

The Warriors got off to a hot start scoring a pair of goals in the first 3 minutes of the game. First the Warriors were able to capitalize on the powerplay with Levi  Stauber scoring his BCHL leading 6th goal of the season to make it 1-0 36 seconds into the game. Cents would be quick to tie it up after Warriors goaltender Johnny Derrick gave up a rebound of a Daneel Tkac shot leaving Brett Roloson with a gift to make it 1-1. Only 46 seconds later Warriors forward Lucas Cullen was able to steal the puck from Olson Werenka and made no mistake beating Cents goalie Ryan Winter to make it 2-1 Warriors. Shots 19-9 Warriors after one.

The Centennials came out flying in the second frame loading up with 19 shots of their own. Majority of time was spent in the Warriors zone with Johnny Derrick making more than a couple key saves to keep it 2-1 Warriors. The lead would be short lived however when Declan Douthart got called for interference. The Centennials would go on the power play leading to a Thomas Marty goal tying the game up at two heading into the dressing room. Shots on 28-25 Centennials.

The Warriors couldn’t muster up any momentum in the third period with the Centennials continuing to pressure the West Kelowna end. At the 17 minute mark the Warriors would cough up the puck in their own zone leading to a Daneel Tkac goal that went off Johnny Derrick’s glove and in to give the Centennials first lead of the evening. The Cents would add an insurance goal on a two on one where defender Joey Berkopec fired a shot that missed the net and took a strange bounce off the boards back to Payton Matsui who was left wide open to make it 4-2 late. The Centennials would hold on to win 4-2. Shots 46-39 Centennials.