For anyone who could not attend or watch tonight’s Vipers game here are my thoughts and views from tonight’s game. You may agree or disagree but we all have our own view and opinion on any game we watch. This is my opinion and my thoughts on how I saw tonight’s game. I try to be unbiased and give a fare recap on both sides. Thanks for stopping by & visiting my blog.
I was at tonight's Vipers-Silverbacks game as Vernon defeated Salmon Arm 7-5 in front of 990 fans at the Shaw Centre.
Vernon: Danny Todosychuk
Salmon Arm: Angus Redmond
1st Period: In the opening seconds TJ Dumonceaux lead a three on two rush before being tripped coming into the Silverbacks zone, Salmon Arm would come back the other way, Phil Middleton setup Backs captain Bryden Marsh who stepped over the blueline and beat Danny Todosychuk at 0:48 giving SA the all important first goal. Middleton with the helper on a goal Todosychuk would like to have back. Just over three minutes into the frame Thomas Aldworth with an odd man rush couldnt make the pass across after a nice defensive play by Damian Chrcek broke up Aldworth's pass atempt. Both teams with not alot of pressure or quality chances early looked to be fairly evenly matched. The Vipers with very little pressure didnt get any real scoring chances at all as Salmon Arm was able to generate a few opportunities but nothing that would have resulted in a scoring chance. Just before the midway mark the Silverbacks would get some good sustained pressure deep in the Vernon zone, as the Backs carried a good chunk of minutes in the Vipers zone but again didnt really get any quality chances. The Vipers would get a strong shift from Liam Finlay who ripped a quick shot from the slot was stopped by Angus Redmond on Vernon's first real good look at the net just seconds before the ten minute mark. Not alot of action in the opening period as both teams went back and fourth before Salmon Arm come very close to taking a two goal lead. With 5:09 remaining Thomas Plese got a quick low shot off the draw beat Danny Todosychuk but hit the post. Thomas Aldworth and Liam Coughlin come right back the other end of the rink on an odd man rush, Aldworth fed Coughlin at the side of the net who was robbed after Angus Redmond come across the blue paint to make a huge pad save off the Viper forward keeping this a one goal game. Two good chances at both ends of the rink towards the end of the period. In the dying seconds former Vernon Vipers forward Logan Mick kept the play alive, carried the puck into the offesnive zone got a quick shot off was stopped by Danny Todosychuk before Karl El-Mir beat Todosychuk fivehole at the buzzer looked to give the Backs a 2-0 lead but the buzzer sounded just seconds before the puck went into the goal as the goal was waived off. Salmon Arm was up 1-0 after 20 minutes of play. The Vipers didnt get off to the start they wanted. TJ Dumonceaux was tripped breaking into the Silverbacks zone on an odd man rush should have given Vernon a powerplay just seconds into the game, but with no call SA comes back up ice and scores just fourty eight seconds into the contest to take the lead. Both teams didnt generate alot of quality scoring chances. The Backs had more quality shots on goal as Vernon didnt generate much offence. The Vipers didnt look all that sharp as Salmon Arm had a little more jump. Both teams were very even through out the opening period. The Vipers outshot the Silverbacks 15-14.
2nd Period: Just nineteen seconds into the middle frame Mitch Meek spotted a wide open Liam Finlay who found the open net in front tied the game 1-1 at 0:19 Meek with the assist. The Backs come right back, with a great drive to the net Josh Blanchard was denied after a big save from Vipers starting goaltender Danny Todosychuk robbed Blanchard at the side of the net. Vernon looked much better to start the period was playing with alot more jump compared to the opening period. Liam Coughlin tried setting up Thomas Aldworth on a Vernon two on one but Andrew Farny with a huge defensive play broke up Coughlin's pass atempt. A few plays later Farny jumped up into the rush on a Salmon Arm odd man rush was stoned by Todosychuk who made a huge pad save keeping this game tied. Vernon then slowly got some pressure in the offensive zone and was able to carry the play for a good three or four minutes with some sustained pressure in the Silverbacks zone. Bryden Marsh with a good opportunity couldnt beat Danny Todosychuk who flashed the leather made a quick glove save off the SA captain. Some good chances at both ends of the rink as Vernon carried the edge in play at times in the first half. The Vipers would take their first lead of the night just past the halfway mark. Thomas Aldworth through the puck to the front of the net where Liam Coughlin was driving to the net beat Silverbacks starting goaltender Angus Redmond down low giving Vernon a 2-1 lead at 12:45 Aldworth with the assist. But less then three minutes later Josh Blanchard was left alone in front tied the game 2-2 at 15:25 Ryley Booth collected the assist. The Backs come very close to grabbing the lead after Josh Blanchard was robbed at the side of the net for a second time this period couldnt beat Todosychuk down low. Salmon Arm native Colton McCarthy drove hard to the net was stopped by Angus Redmond on a nice drive and chance by the Vernon forward. McCarthy would get rewarded for his hard work put the Vipers up 3-2 at 18:54 Luke Shiplo and Riley Brandt with the assists. The Vipers looking to take the lead heading into the 3rd couldnt contain the Backs in the final minute. Joshua Laframboise left all alone in front tied the game at 19:27 Taro Hirose & Carson Bolduc collected the helpers. On the following shift SA would get the games first powerplay, that would head into the 3rd period. The game was tied 3-3 after 40 minutes of play. A huge goal just twenty one seconds into the period tied the game as Vernon played and looked much better then the opening frame. The Vipers carried the play at times but also got a little careless in their own end. Some poor defensive coverage allowed the Silverbacks to score twice as Salmon Arm with several odd man rushes had some real good opportunities. Vernon looked to be the better team in the opening seven minutes or so but give Salmon Arm credit they come back with a few hard working shifts of their own as both teams were even in the second half. A very entertaining period with lots of good chances at both ends of the rink. Shots were even 13-13.
3rd Period: The Backs started the third on the man advanatage that was carried over from the 2nd period. Andrew Farny's quick release from the backend was stopped by Danny Todosychuk who was forced to make a big pad save kicked out a big rebound to a wide open Chase Priskie who was stopped by Todosychuk on the second opportunity. With just fourteen seconds left on the powerplay, Taro Hirose gave SA a 4-3 lead at 1:22 Carson Bolduc and Chase Priskie picked up the assists. The Silverbacks with lots of jump and energy looked good in the opening minutes were on the attack sworming the Vipers. The Backs would grab a two goal lead after Ross Heidt waited for Danny Todosychuk to go down went high put SA up 5-3 at 3:23 Colton Thibault & Taro Hirose with the helpers. This was the end of the night for Todosychuk who was pulled in favor of backup Jarrod Schamerhorn. Todosychuk gave up five goals on thirty five SA shots. A minute later Vernon would get their first look with the PP this evening. The Vipers with two great opportunities couldnt convert after Liam Coughlin with a spin move in close was stopped by Angus Redmond in close before TJ Dumonceaux somehow missed a wide open cage as Vernon was unable to get within a goal. Salmon Arm would kill off the penalty. Just less then a minute later the Backs would get their second PP of the night, getting a few good chances Jarrod Schamerhorn was tested made atleast two big saves with traffic in front. Vernon with a strong penalty kill was able to kill off the minor. Just over a minute later the Silverbacks would head back to the man advantage but again another big penalty kill by the Vipers as the Backs struggled didnt generate much with the powerplay couldnt put the Vipers away. It seemed like both teams went back and fourth switching powerplays as once again Vernon would get their second powerplay of the period and capitalize. Mitch Meek jumped up into the play beat Redmond in close getting the Vipers to within a goal at 14:26 Liam Coughlin and Luke Voltin with the helpers. A few plays later Jarrod Schamerhorn made a huge save off Colton Thibault who was alone in front on a game saver keeping this a one goal game. Back come the Vipers with some pressure down low Mitch Meek would get his second of the night tied the game 5-5 at 16:14 Liam Coughlin and Luke Voltin with the assists as the Silverbacks were stunned. The Backs called a timeout. This was a huge goal that seemed to give Vernon the momentum and edge in play as the Silverbacks were reeling after giving up back to back goals late in the period. This game wasnt heading to overtime just yet as the Viper comeback was on its way. Johnny Coughlin with an individual effort carried the puck through the hashmarks went in close on Angus Redmond before dishing off to Jagger Williamson who was at the side of the net to give the Vipers a 6-5 lead at 17:35 Coughlin with the lone helper as the Viper bench erupted. Vernon with a strong forecheck had the Silverbacks hemened in their own end couldnt get Redmond out for the extra attacker as the Vipers did a great job at keeping the puck deep, killing off some valuable time off the clock. SA was finally able to get Redmond to the bench with fourty eight seconds remaining before Mitch Oliver with a long shot from inside the Viper blueline hit the post before the puck went into the open cage put Vernon up 7-5 at 19:42 TJ Dumonceaux and Jagger Williamson with the assists sealing the 7-5 come from behind win for Vernon. What a wild period. Salmon Arm with a strong start jumps out to a two goal lead less then four minutes into the period was all over Vernon. The Vipers didnt look very good at all in the first ten minutes. The Backs really could have used a powerplay goal to put this game away couldnt convert, as the Viper penalty kill-goaltending was very good allowing Vernon to build some momentum eventually tied the game before coming from behind for the win. Vernon with a heroic final six minutes really turned up the heat-pressure and poured on the attack in the final minutes to come away with the victory. Salmon Arm outshot Vernon 18-17.
Top Players: (Vernon)
Mitch Meek (2 goals & 1 assist) Was clutch late in the game scored twice and collected an assist earlier in the game to help the Vipers come from behind for the victory. Meek jumped into the play on both goals.
I really liked the line of Liam Coughlin (1 goal & 2 assists), TJ Dumonceaux (1 assist) & Thomas Aldworth (1 assist) showed a ton of jump and energy were really flying all night. These three played a very strong game, at both ends of the rink. Coughlin with atleast three great scoring chances was able to pot one while Aldworth was very strong with and without the puck. Very strong along the boards winning the battles. Dumonceaux's speed and penalty kill was very strong.
The line of Jagger Williamson (1 goal & 1 assist), Luke Voltin (2 assists) & Liam Finlay (1 goal) also played very well for the Vipers. Finlay was another kid who was really skating hard and flying most of the game. Williamson and Voltin both were going to the net, made some nice plays in and around the net on different goals.
Colton McCarthy (1 goal) I thought looked fairly good playing his hometown team for the first time this season. A big body plays with an aggresive style, goes hard to the net, really works hard and competes in the greasy areas.
Danny Todosychuk (30 saves) I think would like to have back the games first goal. Bryden Marsh beat the Viper goaltender with a shot just inside the blueline fivehole on a soft goal didnt look to be all that focused early but as the game went along made some huge saves for the Vipers keeping his club in the game. Other then the first goal and SA's fifth goal I dont think you could blame the goaltender. The Viper defence didnt give their goaltender much help, left him hung out to dry on atleast three goals.
Jarrod Schamerhorn (10 saves) Come in relief after Danny Todosychuk was pulled after giving up five goals on thirty five Salmon Arm shots. Schamerhorn come into the 3rd cold made some big saves early before making a game saver off Colton Thibault. The Backs were up 5-4 Thibault was robbed after being left alone in the slot couldnt beat Schamerhorn. Thibault scores here and its 6-4 SA, the Vipers get a huge save from their goaltender come back the other way a few shifts later to tie the game.
Game Thought's: (Vernon)
This wasnt one of the Vipers best played games but a game they needed to win and did in a huge third period comeback. Last weekend in West Kelowna the Vipers started the game with a lackluster 1st period before finally stepping up their play in the 2nd and 3rd periods fell short of a comeback falling 6-5 in double overtime. Tonight the Vipers give up a soft goal just fourty eight seconds into the game didnt gnerate much offence or offensive zone time at all were only down a goal. I thought Vernon played and looked much better in the 2nd period took a 2-1 and 3-2 lead before allowing the Silverbacks to tie the game on some poor defensive coverage. The Vipers looked better in the 2nd but also didnt look as good in their own end at times. Vernon gave up way too many odd man rushes this period as well as left players alone in front. The Viper forwards were playing way to high, and the defensive coverage wasnt very good. The Vipers didnt look very good to start the 3rd gave up two quick back to back goals early fell behind 5-3 as it didnt look very good. The Vipers got into penalty trouble but a strong penalty kill were able to stick within two before coming on strong to finish the game. The Vipers really turned up the pressure in the final six minutes were attacking the zone often scored four goals in five minutes. The Vipers stunned SA and changed the momentum of the game in the final six minutes. The turning point was the huge game saver from Jarrod Schamerhorn off Colton Thibault. Thibault was alone in the slot was robbed by Schamerhorn with the Backs up 5-4. Thibault scores here and its now 6-4 instead Vernon comes back shortly after to tie the game and never looks back. The Vipers need to work on their defensive coverage and consistancy. This was a must win, with the Backs in last place and Vernon trying to stay ahead of West Kelowna in the standings the Vipers need to beat the bottom teams in the Division and stay in reach of West Kelowna, Merritt & Penticton. The Vipers snap a three game losing streak in Salmon Arm going back to last season. Not very many Viper fans at the game tonight, usally a good draw for Vernon fans to make the trip up but not tonight.
Top Players: (Salmon Arm)
Phil Middleton (1 assist) I thought played very well, laid out a huge hit on Thomas Aldworth in the 3rd period.
Chase Priskie (1 assist) Another d-man that played well. Was active on the point, getting pucks to the net picked up an assist on the Backs 4th goal.
Andrew Farny I thought played very well on the blueline. Made a huge defensive play on a Viper two on one attack, cut off Liam Coughlin's pass attempt. Farny also jumped up into the rush was robbed by Danny Todosychuk on a huge save in the 2nd period.
Josh Blanchard (1 goal) Was stopped twice on almost the same play by Danny Todosychuk early in the 2nd period. I thought Blanchard played hard, showed alot of jump and energy was going to the net most of the night, was always in and around the net, competed hard.
Taro Hirose (1 goal & 2 assists) Played well for Salmon Arm, collected three points was involved in the play. Seems to play well against Vernon.
Joshua Laframboise (1 goal) I thought played with alot of jump in his game, was active with the puck, involved in the play at times.
Angus Redmond (39 saves) I thought made some big saves through out the game to keep his club in the contest at times. Didnt get alot of help from his defence late in the game was left hung out to dry on the last few Viper goals.
Game Thought's: (Salmon Arm)
For a team sitting last in the Interior Division you would never guess they only had just eight wins without looking at the standings. Salmon Arm has give Vernon trouble over the past few seasons and it showed again tonight. The Silverbacks have lost four straight played very well for most of the night, had some great opportunities made for a very exciting and wild hockey game. The Silverbacks never quit, kept plugging away, kept battling back through out the game. The Backs had several odd man rushes through out the game, were skating hard. Down 2-1 and 3-2 the Backs tied it up both times before scoring twice in less then four minutes to start the 3rd. I didnt give Vernon much hope in a comeback the way they were playing and figured SA would hold on for the win. Boy was I wrong. Salmon Arm with two key powerplays could have put the Vipers away but couldnt convert with the man advantage. The Vipers game tying goal really took the life out of the team, you could see it on the bench and the players faces. This was a tough pill to swollow. The Vipers gained full momentum, had all the play and the Backs couldnt recover. A tough loss at home in a game where they had a chance to win. Now just like Vernon Salmon Arm's defence let them down late in the game with some blown coverage in front of the net. Give the Backs credit they battled and played hard and gave everyone a entertaining game to watch. A pretty small crowd on hand for tonight's game.
Riley Guenther (Injured)
Mackenzie Bauer (Injured)
Energy player of the game:
1st Star: Mitch Meek (2 goals & 1 assist)
2nd Star: Taro Hirose (1 goal & 2 assists)
3rd Star: Thomas Aldworth (1 assist)
Ian Douglas's Salmon Arm Silverbacks Blog.