Junior hockey: Blazers down Rockets again, Warriors edged in OT – Okanagan

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A roundup of junior hockey results from the Okanagan and area.

WESTERN HOCKEY LEAGUE

KAMLOOPS 3, KELOWNA 2

The Kelowna Rockets lost back-to-back games this weekend against the WHL’s last-placed team, the Kamloops Blazers.

The Rockets came into Kamloops on Saturday looking for revenge after the Blazers defeated Kelowna in the dying seconds of overtime the night prior.

The Blazers jumped out to an early 2-0 lead on goals from Matteo Koci and Josh Kelly. Then, 1:50 into the second period, Kamloops struck again to make it 3-0. Rockets starting goalie Jake Pilon was yanked from the net after allowing three goals on 15 shots. He was replaced by Jari Kykkanen.

With 39 seconds left to play in period two, Rockets forward Dylan Wightman buried a rebound, cutting the deficit to two goals.

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The goaltending change seemed to provide a bit of a spark for Kelowna. Tij Iginla made it a one-goal game when he notched his 32nd goal of the season just 1:06 into the third period. Unfortunately, they could not even up the score and send the game to overtime, as they did on Friday.

Kelowna went 1-for-2 with the man advantage, while Kamloops did not score on any of their five power play attempts. The Rockets outshot the Blazers 33-22. Kamloops now leads the season series 3-1.

The Rockets will head south of the border for a three-game road trip starting in Portland on Wednesday.

Saturday’s results

  • Saskatoon 3, Prince Albert 2
  • Medicine Hat 5, Moose Jaw 3
  • Red Deer 5, Brandon 3
  • Seattle 3, Everett 1
  • Portland 5, Spokane 4
  • Prince George 3, Tri-City 2
  • Vancouver 7, Victoria 6

Sunday’s games


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  • Edmonton at Calgary
  • Spokane at Medicine Hat
  • Prince George at Everett

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B.C. HOCKEY LEAGUE

CHILLIWACK 3, WEST KELOWNA 2 (OT)

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The West Kelowna Warriors let a third-period lead slip and the team fell in overtime with the visiting Chilliwack Chiefs on Saturday.

In front of a sold-out crowd, the Warriors brought their fans to their feet at 12:14 in the opening frame when Jack Pridham deposited his 14th goal of the season. The Chiefs would answer back courtesy of Willyam Gendron, and the score would stay even heading into period two.

With the Warriors on a power play in the second period, Felix Caron found the back of the net, giving his team a 2-1 lead.

Just before the midway mark of the final frame, Nathan Morin of the Chiefs scored the equalizer, and the score stayed deadlocked at 2-2 at the end of the period, meaning the winner would have to be decided in sudden-death overtime.

Parker Murray would be the hero for Chilliwack in OT, scoring the game-winning goal to send his team home happy.

The Warriors will hit the road to face Nanaimo, Port Alberni, Cranbrook and Trail over the next two weekends.

PENTICTON 4, SURREY 1

At Penticton, the Surrey Eagles heavily outshot the Vees 32-22 on Saturday, but could only find the back of the net once, with Andrew Ness setting aside 31 shots for Penticton.

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Simon Meier opened the scoring for Penticton with his seventh tally of the season, but the Eagles responded less than two minutes later with a power play goal. The score stayed 1-1 after 20 minutes of play.

In period two, with the Vees on a man advantage, Cade Littler restored the lead for Penticton – the only goal in the middle frame. Then, exactly one minute into period three, Penticton’s Conyr Hellyer scored to put his team up by a pair.

Callum Arnott added an empty-net goal, and the Vees steered home a 4-1 decision. With the win, the Vees are now tied with Surrey for first place in the BCHL standings with 54 points respectively.

The Vees take on the Silverbacks in Salmon Arm on Friday, Feb. 2.

TRAIL 3, VERNON 1

The Vernon Vipers struggled to find offence on Saturday night against the Trail Smoke Eaters, and it cost them two crucial points in the standings.

After a scoreless opening period, the Vipers would light the lamp first, thanks to a power play goal from Luke Pakulak. Minutes later, with the Smoke Eaters on a power play of their own, Montreal native Mathieu Cobetto-Roy wired home his 19th goal of the year, and the score would stay even at 1-1 after 40 minutes of play.

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Just under three minutes into the final frame, the Smoke Eaters scored yet another power play marker, giving them their first lead of the game. Then, with just 11 seconds remaining and the Vipers net empty, Trail’s Chase Stefanek scored his second goal of the night, capping a 3-1 win.

With the win, the Smoke Eaters are now just three points back of the Vipers, who sit in fourth place of the BCHL’s Interior Division. The Vipers get back in action against the Bucks in Cranbrook on Sunday.

Saturday’s results

  • Salmon Arm 6, Prince George 0
  • Prince Rupert 1, Nanaimo 0
  • Merritt 6, Victoria 3
  • Cowichan Valley 4, Langley 3

Sunday’s game

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