Vernon (26-10-1-2) @ Salmon Arm (29-8-1-1)
Tonight will be the 8th meeting between these two hockey clubs as the Silverbacks hold the season series at 5-2. Tonight will be the fourth straight meeting between these two teams within the last week. Both teams split the home and home series before the Christmas break. Salmon Arm defeated Vernon last night in Salmon Arm 7-3 to take the first game of another home & home series. The physical play along with some emotion started to boil over last night, as both teams are starting not to like one another, should be another heated rematch tonight in Vernon.
Heres a look at the season series:
September 5th @ Vernon: Vernon wins 4-1
The Vipers & Silverbacks clashed in the Vipers home opener. The Vipers were carried out onto the ice in the teams opening ceremonies in the back of the Vernon RCMP pickup trucks with the lights flashing as they introduced each player. Then a swat team member come shooting down a rope from the rafters, the officer then ran to a RCMP van on the ice and opened the back doors as the Vipers Captain & Assistant Captains jumped out from the back of the van. Salmon Arm opened the scoring just eleven seconds into the period, with a goal from Conor Morrison. This was the one and only goal the Backs would score as Vernon would beat Bryan Gillis four times going on to the 4-1 victory. Steve Tresierra, Cory Kane, Kellen Jones & Adam Thompson led the attack for Vernon. Andrew Hammond picked up his first win of the season making 27 saves.
September 6th @ Salmon Arm: Salmon Arm wins 5-4 (Overtime)
This was the back of a home and home series between these two Okanagan rivals. Tonight was Salmon Arms home opener and they didn’t let the home town crowd down. Just 1:41 into Overtime, Zac Rasmussen scored the game winner as the Silverbacks record the 5-4 OT win. Mark Zengerle & Conor Morrison collect three points each. Bryan Gillis picks up his first win of the season making 23 saves. John Digness picks up two points in the loss for Vernon.
September 20th @ Salmon Arm: Salmon Arm wins 7-2
This was an ugly game if you’re a Vernon fan. Salmon Arm destroys Vernon in a big 7-2 victory. The Silverbacks outplayed the Vipers as 1st star, Mark Zengerle collects four points. 2nd star, Keenan Desmet scores two goals and picks up two assists. 3rd star, Conor Morrison picks up (1 & 3). Andrew Hammond was given the hook after giving up four goals on just 17 shots. Backup Mark Segal didn’t do much better, allowing three goals.
November 7th @ Vernon: Salmon Arm wins 4-3
The Backs win there third straight against Vernon, in a 4-3 win. David Killip & Colin Lidster each pick up two points in the win. Bryan Gillis makes 31 saves between the pipes collecting the victory. Kellen Jones leads the way for the Vipers with one goal and one assist. The Silverbacks lead the season series 3-1.
December 19th @ Vernon: Salmon Arm wins 4-3
Salmon Arm wins there fourth straight against Vernon with a 4-3 victory, there 11th win in a row. Mark Zengerle led the way with a goal and 2 assists. Zengerle was all over the ice. D-man, Ashford McMaster picked up 2 assists in the win, looking very solid. Bryan Gillis was steady, having to make his best saves for last, in the 3rd period, facing 15 Vernon shots. Matt Walters & Zac Rasmussen played a feisty role, getting under the skin of some Vipers. Walters & Rasmussen both played with that in your face style of hockey. The Vipers played about 7-8 minutes of the game, inwich they made a late rally, but it wasn’t enough as they fell to the Silverbacks on the scoreboard and in the standings. Salmon Arm with the win, moves 5 pts up on Vernon for first in the Interior.
December 20th @ Salmon Arm: Vernon wins 6-4
The Backs jumped out to a early 2-0 lead with goals from, Mark Zengerle and Keenan Desmet before the Vipers scored three straight goals in the 2nd period and went on to the 6-4 victory. Brothers Connor & Kellen Jones lead the way for Vernon with 3 pts each along with Vernon product Bryce Kakoske also putting up 3 pts in the win. Former Silverbacks goaltender, Graeme Gordon makes 21 saves beating his former club, improving his record to 9-0 as a Viper.
December 29th @ Salmon Arm: Salmon Arm wins 7-3
Vernon got off to a good start, scoring first with a goal by Mike Collins, but on the next rush the Silverbacks would score four quick goals just over the next three minutes jumping ahead 4-1 and in full control. Anytime the Vipers would score to climb back to within two goals, Salmon Arm answered right back within minutes after the Vernon goal, re-taking the three goal lead once again. Former Silverback goaltender Graeme Gordon allowed all seven goals, suffering his first loss as a Viper. Viper killer Mark Zengerle lead the way with a goal & a assist. Jason Beatie added two assists, and Captain Matt Walters pitched in with a goal and some physical play. Vernon played most of the 3rd period shorthanded as tempers flared in the final period. Salmon Arm was the far better team, looking very strong on home ice. Should be a war tonight.
Key Players To Watch: