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GAME DAY: GM #35 Vees vs. Cowichan Valley Capitals

Photo: Jack Murray


Game Time: 6:00 pm PST

Location: SOEC

RadioBounce 800 am

Webcast: Hockey TV 

Penticton Vees

GM & Head Coach: Fred Harbinson

2022-23: GP 34 31-3-0-0, 1st Interior Conference

Home: 16-0-0-0

Away: 15-3-0-0

GF: 185

GA: 62

Power Play: 37% (1)

Penalty Kill: 83.9% (5)

Top Scorer: Bradly Nadeau (28-39-67)

Top Rookie: Aydar Suniev (25-31-56)

Last 5 Games Next 5 Games
7-2 W @ Trail (Jan. 14) Jan. 25 @ Vernon, 7:00 pm
3-0 L @ Prince George (Jan. 7) Jan. 28 @ Cranbrook, 6:00 pm
3-0 W @ Prince George (Jan. 6) Feb. 3 @ Surrey, 7:00 pm
6-3 W @ Vernon (Jan. 1) Feb. 4 @ Victoria, 7:00 pm
9-2 W vs. West Kelowna (Dec. 30) Feb. 10 vs. Coquitlam, 7:00 pm

Last Game: Penticton jumped back into the win column Friday, dispatching the Trail Smoke Eaters 7-2 at Cominco Arena. Big night for Aydar Suniev who had two goals and four points in the win. Bradly and Josh Nadeau each had three points. Frank Djurasevic, Brett Moravec, and Dovar Tinling all had two-point nights. Luca Di Pasquo stopped 26 of 28 shots for his 22nd win of the season. The win came at a cost for the Vees, as Cal Arnott, Ben Brunette, and Billy Norcross all sustained injuries in the first period and did not return. Friday’s win improved the Vees road record to 15-3-0-0 and they are now 4-0-0-0 against Trail.

Tonight’s Game: Tonight, is the only meeting with the Cowichan Valley Capitals in the regular season. This is the first meeting since Nov. 6, of last season when the Caps beat the Vees 3-2 in Duncan. That game featured Vees’ defenceman Owen Simpson, then a member of the Capitals, picking up an assist. On paper, this is 1st versus 18th in the BCHL overall standings, but the Vees can’t take the Caps lightly. Penticton is banged up, missing three regulars from their lineup and had a late night, early morning coming back from Trail. One Vee who will be fresh is the starting goalie. Hank Levy will get the call between the pipes. The 20-year-old is 9-0 with a 1.76 goals-against average and .922 save percentage. He has two shutouts, including his win last Friday in Prince George. Gabriel Guilbault will likely be inserted to fill the absence of Brunette.

The one silver lining to the Vees injury woes is the fact this is their final game before the BCHL All-Star break. After tonight, the Vees don’t play again until Jan. 25. They will have 11 days between games, so they can play short and empty the tank tonight.

Cowichan Valley Capitals

GM & Head Coach: Mike Vandekamp

2022-23: GP 34 7-24-1-2, 18th Coastal Conference

Home: 6-12-1-0

Away: 1-12-0-2

GF: 82

GA: 143

Power Play: 13.5% (18)

Penalty Kill: 74.1% (18)

Top Scorer: Cole Melady (9-11-20)

Top Rookie: William Elias (4-13-17)

Last 5 Games Next 5 Games
4-1 L @ Vernon (Jan. 13) Jan. 27 at Coquitlam, 7:00 pm
4-1 L vs.Wenatchee (Jan. 8) Jan. 28 at Langley, 7:15pm
4-3 SOL @ Powell River (Jan. 7) Jan. 29 at Surrey 4:00 pm
3-1 W vs. Victoria (Jan. 6) Feb. 3 vs. Nanaimo, 7:00 pm
3-1 L @ Victoria (Dec. 31) Feb. 4 vs. Powell River, 7:00 pm

Last Game: Cowichan Valley lost their third consecutive game on Friday, falling 4-1 to the Vernon Vipers at Kal Tire Place. William Elias was the only Cap to score in the loss. McCoy Bidewell stopped 31 of 35 shots in the Capitals crease. Cowichan Valley trailed 1-0 after 20 minutes and 3-0 after two periods. Last night, kicked off a stretch of five-straight road games for Cowichan Valley.

Outlook: It’s been an eventful season for the Capitals. In November they made a coaching change, as Mike Vandekamp took over as General Manager & Head Coach on Nov. 18, taking the reins from Bryan Passmore. This Vandekamp’s second stint with the Capitals, as he was the GM & Head Coach for two seasons from 2018-2020 in his previous tenure.

Cowichan Valley has been busy retooling their roster, as this week they made a big trade on Trade Deadline day, acquiring forwards Ethan DeKay, Quinn Disher, and defenceman Ethan O’Halloran from the Brooks Bandits. They also traded their top scorer, 20-year-old Luke Strickland to the Wellington Dukes of the OJHL in exchange for future considerations.