I was at tonight's Vipers-Rivermen game as Vernon defeated Langley 5-2 in front of 1,425 fans at Kal Tire Place.
Vernon: Ty Taylor
Langley: Bo Didur
1st Period: About a minute fifteen into the opening frame Zac Masson beat Cooper Watson with a burst of speed, went hard to the goal before being denied in front by Ty Taylor. Masson kept with the play, picked up the rebound before getting a second opportunity off a shot from the side of the net. Both teams looked pretty even off the start but it was the Rivermen who were out in front outshooting Vernon 4-0 early. Cooper Leitch was having words with Connor Clouston as the two exchanged words on two different occasions. The Vipers had their fare share of zone time, just couldn't get any pucks to the net. The Vipers needed almost seven minutes to record their first shot of the night. Langley would get the games first powerplay, a quick shot from the point found it's way through traffic but just missed the goal. The Rivermen unable to capitalize with the man advantage. On the following play the Vipers would get their first look on the man advantage. Hunter Zandee setup former Chilliwack Chief Jesse Lansdell at the side of the net who banked his shot in and off the pad of Bo Didur giving Vernon a 1-0 lead at 9:27 Zandee and Cooper Watson picked up the assists. Off the following faceoff Andrew Dumaresque and Cooper Leitch lead the Rivermen odd man rush, Deumaresque kept and fired just missing the far corner on a missed opportunity. The Vipers would clear the zone before back come the Rivermen. Cooper Leitch alone at the side of the goal, ripped a quick high shot that beat Ty Taylor but went off the crossbar as Langley with back to back quality chances couldn't tie the game. The Rivermen with a slight edge in play in the first half were up in shots 5-1 at one point but were down 1-0. The Vipers slowly got going and picked up their game in the second half. Austin Adamson on a goal mouth scramble couldn't bury his shot from in close with bodies all around the top of the crease, stayed with the play buried his rebound in front giving Vernon a 2-0 lead at 14:40 Jesse Lansdell & Nicholas Rasovic collected the helpers. A few minutes later Nicholas Rasovic and Austin Adamson in on the two on one rush, Rasovic kept and fired was denied by Diduer. Shortly after Michael Ufberg's point shot found it's way through traffic beat a screened Bo Didur along the ice gave Vernon a 3-0 lead at 18:14 Brett Stapley and Niko Karamanis picked up the assists. Didur was in shock after the goal was scored, was till looking confused on how that puck found it's way to the back of the net. This was the end of the night for Didur who was replaced by Braedon Fleming. Didur stopped 10 of Vernon's thirteen shots. Just less then a minute later Keith Andreson setup Steven Jandric who put a nice move around Braedon Flemming giving Vernon a 4-0 lead at 19:21 Anderson & Sol Seibel drew the assists. Flemming allows the the first shot he sees in. The Rivermen come back with a good push back in the final twenty seconds. On a goal mouth scramble Langley couldn't bury the puck past a down and out Ty Taylor before a minor scrum occurs at the buzzer with lots of pushing and shoving. Darren Hards gets tangled up with Ty Taylor before several Vipers jump in to pull Hards away from the Viper goaltender. It was 4-0 Vernon after 20 minutes of play. Both teams looked fairly even in the opening few minutes, Vernon was having troubles getting pucks to the net early, needed almost seven minutes to get their first shot of the period. Langley was outshooting Vernon 5-1 early had a slight edge in play in the first half before the Vipers picked up their game, got rolling and would score three goals in the final five and a half minutes, chasing Bo Didur from the pipes. The Vipers were the better team in the second half. Vernon outshot Langley 14-8.
2nd Period: Austin Adamson on a wrap around in the opening minute couldn't beat Rivermen goaltender Braedon Flemming. Shortly after Hunter Zandee couldn't solve Flemming who come across the blue paint on a Viper three on two attack robbed Zandee two and a half minutes into the middle frame. The Vipers with two good chances early into the period. Two and a half minutes later Connor Clouston dropped the gloves with Rivermen captain Cooper Leitch as the two tangled in front of the Langley bench. A pretty lengthy scrap between the two, before both hit the ice. Both Leitch and Clouston were tossed from the game for fighting. Off the following faceoff John Schuldt's point shot was redirected on it's way to the net was somehow stopped by Vipers starting goaltender Ty Taylor who made the first save before lying on his back to stop the second chance in close, keeping the puck out of the net. Langley come real close to getting on the board. The Rivermen had some good jump come the 2nd period were the better of the two teams. Langley was skating hard, carried a lot of the play for most of the period. Sol Seibel took a big hit in his own end, looked slow to get up, looked to be in some discomfort making his way to the bench. Seibel went to the Vipers dressing room before returning later and would finish the game. The Vipers back on their heels, looked a little sluggish at times, were turning over the puck on several occasions through out the period. The Rivermen hard work would eventually pay off. John Schuldt's point shot got through traffic, went post and in getting Langley on the board at 8:32 Zac Masson with the helper. The Rivermen didn't stop and come right back. Just over a minute later on a delayed penalty Andrew Dumaresque beat Ty Taylor cutting the Vernon lead at 4-2 at 9:41 Ryan Barrow & Gavin Payne collected the assists. Shortly after Darren Hards with a burst of speed, broke in for the breakaway was stopped by Taylor who come up with the big save, keeping this a two goal game. On a few plays later Keith Anderson tried breaking free for the breakaway fell-lost an edge couldn't get a shot off. Shortly after Langley would jump on the powerplay but shorthanded Niko Karamanis broke free for the breakaway couldn't beat Braeden Flemming. Before the minor expired the Rivermen would take a penalty sending both teams to four on four. Four on four Reid Yochim with a great shot from the slot was stopped by Taylor who come up with the big pad save. The Rivermen would kill off the remainder of Vernon's shortened powerplay. Vernon went a fairly lengthy period without a single shot on goal. The Vipers would get a few good shifts late to finish the period before another scrum at the buzzer as some pushing and shoving occurred. Tempers heated up a bit at the buzzer before both teams were broken up. Vernon was up 4-2 after 40 minutes of play. The Vipers had two good chances in the opening few minutes then went to sleep as it was all Langley for most of the 2nd period. The Rivermen didn't quit, battled hard and played hard outplayed the Vipers. Langley with two quick back to back goals got within two goals heading into the 3rd. Vernon played a lot of the period in their own end, looked sluggish, had troubles getting the puck out of their own end, were turning over the puck often and didn't get a lot of zone time. Langley outshot Vernon 12-8.
3rd Period: Both teams played hard in the final frame didn't get a lot of great quality chances early to start the 3rd. As the period got going the Rivermen had a slight edge in play but unable to generate any real good chances. Early in the period Nicholas Rasovic tried beating his defender one on one, went hard to the net couldn't beat Braeden Flemming. Just before the midway mark Cooper Watson come very close to putting the puck in his own goal after Ty Taylor had to be alert made a difficult save after Watson fired the puck towards his own net. Langley with a few looks-opportunities in close couldn't beat Taylor down low. At the midway mark Vernon would jump on the PP but unable to generate much as the Rivermen were able to kill off the minor. With about five minutes remaining Austin Adamson and Reid Yochim got tangled up in front of the Langley net, both players gave each other a wack or two before grabbing on to one another in a wrestling match before being split up and sent to the penalty box. For two teams that were facing each other for the first time, a lot of tension between the two teams at times. Both teams played hard in the second half, with neither team really getting any grade a chances. The Rivermen would get Braeden Flemming to the bench for the extra attacker with 1:27 remaining. Niko Karamanis in front couldn't connect on the pass out front for a shot at the empty goal. Langley was able to get one last push before Christian Cakebread would seal the victory with a long shot from centre ice, hit the open cage giving Vernon a 5-2 lead at 19:29 Cakebread's goal was unassisted. The Vipers would hang on for the 5-2 victory. Both teams looked fairly even through out the final twenty minutes. I thought Langley had a slight more edge in play at times as both teams didn't really generate a lot for offensive chances.
Top Player's: (Vernon)
Keith Anderson started the night on the fourth line with the two "AP"s before moving onto a line with Steven Jandric and Brody Dale. Anderson wasn't very noticeable in the opening frame, played well in the 2nd period. Had several back to back hard working shifts, fell-lost an edge on a 2nd period breakaway.
Ryan Brushett I thought played fairly well through out the game. Didn't stand out or put up any numbers but was consistant through out the game.
Austin Adamson (1 goal) Played-battled hard, was very good tonight. I thought one of the better Viper forwards. Was skating hard, going to the net, finishing his checks, played hard through out the game.
Nicholas Rasovic (1 assist) Was another Viper forward that played hard, had some good looks-opportunities tonight, was also skating hard, driving to the net, battled through out the game.
Jesse Lansdell (1 goal & 1 assist) I thought played a strong game. Was skating hard, going to the net, creating-looking for opportunities.
Brody Dale (AP) Looked pretty good in his Viper debut in the 3-1 loss to the visiting Penticton Vees Saturday, played well in the win tonight. Was skating hard, played with a lot of jump-energy, played hard at both ends of the rink, never quit skating. Started on the 4th line with Keith Anderson and Evan Walls before moving up to the 3rd line to finish the game.
Ty Taylor (23 saves) Wasn't overly tested but made some key saves at key moments during the game. Looks like the Vipers #1 goaltender, has started in seven of the Vipers last nine games.
Game Thought's: (Vernon)
The Vipers break out with four 1st period goals hang on for the 5-2 victory in a game where the game was a lot closer then the final score. I thought the Vipers played well for two out of the three periods tonight. The opening period both teams looked fairly even but the Vipers were having troubles getting pucks to the net early before taking over in the second half. Vernon scores three goals in the final five and a half minutes of the 1st period. The Vipers may have got a few lucky breaks on the first two goals, but that's how it goes some nights. For a second straight game the Vipers collapse in the 2nd period. Another second period let down as the Vipers look sluggish-turn over the puck often, give up two quick back to back goals allowing the Rivermen back in the game. Vernon seems to settle down and play better in the 3rd. Didn't get a lot of great quality chances but battled-competed and played hard to hold onto the victory. Vernon had to battle and play hard to hold onto the win, as the Rivermen weren't going to roll over and just give up the two points. I thought the Vipers did a much better job at getting pucks to the net, with that quick release the Vipers scored on a quick screened shot from the point that found its way to the back of the net. Vernon had troubles getting pucks to the net-creating/generating chances Saturday in the loss to Penticton, did a much better job tonight. I thought Vernon did a much better job at creating-generating chances, didn't try to get too cute-or do it all yourself. Played a much more team game tonight. The Vipers have four key regulars out of their lineup due to injury-suspension, give this team credit for battling-playing hard with these four kids out of the lineup. This was the Vipers first win vs Langley at home since a 5-1 victory January 30th 2010. A small crowd on hand for tonight's game. Whats up with all the Vipers injuries as of late? The Vipers cant seem to catch a break.
Top Player's: (Langley)
Darren Hards isn't the biggest kid in the lineup, plays big. Mixing it up in and around the net and inbetween stopages this kid was getting under the skin of several Vernon players. Played hard, can skate-move the puck and goes to the net. Was stopped by Ty Taylor on a 2nd period breakaway, played well through out the night.
Zac Masson (1 assist) One of if not the hardest working Rivermen tonight. This kid plays hard, really competed-battled hard in the loss tonight. Had a few good quality chances, has some wheels and a nice flow.
Cooper Leitch had a strong night before being tossed from the game in the 2nd period after dropping the gloves with Connor Clouston. Was involved in the play on a few Langley odd man rushes.
John Schuldt (1 goal) Played very well on the blueline. Played well at both ends of the rink, has a quick release and nice shot. Very reliable defenceman.
Andrew Dumaresque (1 goal) Was another Langley forward who played well tonight. A good skater, carried the play-puck often.
Braeden Flemming (20 saves) Replaced starting goaltender Bo Didur who was pulled late in the 1st period after giving up three goals on thirteen shots. Flemming allowed his first shot he faced but didn't give up another goal for the remainder of the game. Played very well for coming into the game late in the opening period. Plays his position well, dosnt give up many if any rebounds, made the saves when called apon.
Game Thought's: (Langley)
The Rivermen got off to a good start. Looked good early were outshooting the Vipers 4-0 and 5-1 early to start the game, had a bit of a slight edge in play before giving up three goals late in that opening period. Down 4-0 on the road late in the 1st period in a rink you haven't played in this season, this wasn't the start the Rivermen were looking for. But give this team credit, they didn't fold the tents and pack it in. You take away the four 1st period goals or even two of them and we have a different hockey game-outcome. Langley jumped on Vernon and were by far the better team in the 2nd period, carried most of the play, were outskating and outworking the Vipers. Getting their fare share of opportunities, scored two quick back to back goals in just over a minute were back in the game. Come close to getting to within a goal but Darren Hards couldn't pull the trigger on a second period breakaway. The Rivermen kept battling and played hard for the remainder of the game. Had some good looks-chances in and around the net, couldn't capitalize. A hard fought game come up just a bit short. I don't think you can blame Bo Didur on any of the three goals. I'm not exactly sure how Jesse Lansdell's shot-opening goal got through Didur? Didur was tight against the post, I think the puck somehow found its way into the back of the net between his pad-skate. The Rivermen have a fairly big team that can skate, don't quit and play hard. Former Vipers assistant coach Chris Shaw is now an associate head coach with the Rivermen. These two teams will meet again November 27th in Langley. This was the Rivermen's first loss in Vernon since January 2010. Langley has won eight of their last eleven games over Vernon.
Jagger Williamson (Injured)
Riley Brandt (Suspended)
Jimmy Lambert (Injured)
Chris Jandric (Injured)
Energy Player of the Game:
1st Star: Jesse Lansdell (1 goal & 1 assist)
2nd Star: Michael Ufberg (1 goal)
3rd Star: Andrew Dumaresque (1 goal)
BCHL Boxscore-Game summary,
Vernon Vipers Game Summary,
Vernon Vipers Game Summary,