PHOTO: Cherie Morgan/Cherie Morgan Photography
PENTICTON, B.C. – Josh Nadeau scored twice, including the overtime winner, as the Penticton Vees earned their 9th win of the season in a 2-1 victory in extra time over the Alberni Valley Bulldogs on Wednesday night at the South Okanagan Events Centre.
The Vees and Bulldogs were fit to be tied after a period of play as both goaltenders were strong in the opening frame. Kaeden Lane stood tall in the Vees crease, making saves on each of the 5 shots he faced in the opening period, including a big stop on Stephen Castagna early on in the game as Lane coughed the puck up in front of his crease with Castagna collecting in at the top of the crease and sent a low shot that was denied by the left pad of the Vees netminder to keep the game scoreless.
Penticton got the better of the chances as the period went along and finished the period leading in shots by an 8-5 margin as Hobie Hedquist, who came into the game not having allowed a goal in his last three starts, made 8 saves in the opening 20 minutes.
Hedquist’s best save of the frame came from an attempt to go after the puck at the bottom of the left face-off circle after a bounce off the end boards that kicked to the front of the net. Hedquist went to play the puck but Vees forward Fin Williams beat him to it, throwing a shot on with Hedquist flashing his glove to make a big glove stop to keep the Vees and Bulldogs scoreless after the opening period of play.
Penticton began the 2nd period and collected an early power play in the frame and Josh Nadeau put an end to Hedquist’s shutout streak to give the Vees a 1-0 lead. Nadeau gathered speed in the neutral zone and got the puck at the blue line before moving to his right and cutting to the bottom of the face-off circle before zipping a shot over the glove side shoulder of Hedquist to push the Vees ahead by a 1-0 score.
The goal for Nadeau was his 7th marker of the season and snapped a stretch of 213:21 of shutout hockey for Hedquist and the Bulldogs to give Penticton a 1-0 lead which would hold into the 3rd period.
Penticton pushed 11 shots on goal in the middle stanza as Hedquist continued to play strongly in the game while Alberni Valley threw just 4 shots on in the 2nd period as Lane was also equal to the task to keep his team ahead by a goal.
The Bulldogs outshot the Vees by a 7-1 margin in the opening twelve minutes of the period and tied the game 2:28 into the final regulation period. Mirko Buttazzoni batted a puck in from the left face-off circle on a rebound after a shot from the blue line was stopped by Lane but had the puck sneak under his pad to even the score at 1-1.
The Vees closed the gap in the shots on goal category, finishing the period at 8-5 in favour of the Bulldogs as the game was knotted at 1-1 heading into overtime as the Vees set to play in their third overtime of the season.
At the end of regulation, the Vees had a power play that carried over into overtime that they were unsuccessful on but got another man advantage at the tail end of the extra period, outshooting the Bulldogs by an 8-1 margin in the five-minute frame.
Bradley Nadeau let a shot go from the right face-off circle that Hedquist got a piece of but the puck trickled through his body as Josh Nadeau came in and slid the puck over the goal line for his second goal of the night and 8th of the year with just 24 seconds remaining in overtime for the 2-1 victory.
Kaeden Lane turned aside 17 of the 18 shots he faced in his 6th win of the season while Hobie Hedquist stopped 30 of the 32 shots thrown his way in his 2nd loss of the campaign.
FINAL SCORE: 2-1 Vees (OT)
SHOTS ON GOAL: 32-18 Vees
VEES PP: 2/6
VEES PK: 1/1
1) Josh Nadeau (2-0-2)
2) Hobie Hedquist (30 saves on 32 shots)
3) Kaeden Lane (17 saves on 18 shots)
Fortis Energy Player of the Game: Josh Niedermayer (0-0-0)
The Vees (9-2-0-0) will continue their four-game home stand as they host the Victoria Grizzlies (8-4-0-0) on Saturday night at the South Okanagan Events Centre as the Vees honour the Indigenous community with their Orange Shirt Game. Fans are encouraged to wear orange in support of the night. Puck drop is slated for 6:00 PM with tickets available for purchase online at ValleyFirstTix.com as well as at the SOEC Box Office. The game will also be broadcasted live on Bounce Radio 800 as well as streamed online at BCHLTV.ca beginning with the pre-game show at 5:40 PM.