PHOTO: Cherie Morgan/Cherie Morgan Photography
PENTICTON, B.C. – Yaniv Perets was perfect on Saturday night at the South Okanagan Events Centre, stopping all 29 shots he faced in his 2nd Okanagan Cup shutout as the Penticton Vees extended their win streak to eight games with a 6-0 triumph over the West Kelowna Warriors.
A bit of a slower start greeted this game as to what we saw from a night ago but the teams started to catch their rhythm as the frame went along and it was a goal from Jackson Niedermayer that really seemed to get the Vees into the game and help them to a 1-0 lead at the 8:47 mark of the opening period.
Josh Niedermayer had his left point shot go off a body from the left face-off circle as the puck bounced to his older brother, Jackson, in the slot as he fired a shot past an unsuspecting Jay Thomson in the Warriors goal for his 5th Okanagan Cup tally and his third goal of the weekend to push the Vees ahead by a 1-0 margin and help the home side draw first blood.
Penticton used their lethal power play to help them take a 2-0 advantage later in the period at the 11:50 mark of the frame as Matteo Costantini continued his strong play against the Warriors. The forward was set up by Owen Murray at the top of the left face-off circle as Costantini walked into the dot and fired a shot under the blocker of Thomson for his 4th goal of the Okanagan Cup to give the Vees a 2-0 advantage.
Late in the period, the Vees found themselves down a skater for the remainder of the game as Tyler Ho was charged with a checking from behind major penalty and a game misconduct on a hit on the Warriors Matthew Stienburg as West Kelowna would head to a five-minute power play carrying into the 2nd period.
The Vees, with the help of goaltender Yaniv Perets, were able to kill off the five-minute major power play and carry the momentum into taking a 3-0 lead at the 6:54 mark of the middle stanza with Switzerland’s own Stefano Bottini collecting his first Okanagan Cup goal.
Jack Bar stepped up from the blue line and intercepted a pass before sending a feed down to the bottom of the left face-off circle as Bottini chipped the puck through the legs of Thomson to give the home side a 3-0 lead in the 2nd period.
Perets continued to play strongly in the Vees net, making a stop on a partial breakaway from John Evans before the Vees would increase their lead later in the period at the 16:41 mark with the Captain Fin Williams getting on the board.
Liam Malmquist made the play, moving inside the blue line with a nifty move that shook off a Warriors defender and opened the ice for a pass to the left face-off circle where Williams collected and slid a shot through the legs of Thomson for his 2nd Okanagan Cup goal and a 4-0 Vees lead.
The scoring in the middle stanza, which the Vees outscored West Kelowna by an 8-0 margin in the 2nd period on the weekend, was capped off by former Warriors Ryan Upson, who tallied his 3rd goal of the tournament. Bottini made a terrific play below the goal line, sending a pass to the front of the net as Upson was able to tuck the puck through the legs of Thomson with 1:39 remaining in the frame to push the Vees ahead by a 5-0 score.
Devlin O’Brien pushed across the lone goal in the 3rd period to give Penticton a 6-0 lead at the 11:31 mark with his 5th Okanagan Cup goal. Malmquist made a nifty play behind the net, passing from the glove side to Thomson’s blocker side as O’Brien chipped a shot just through Thomson’s right side inside the post to give the Vees a 6-0 advantage midway through the 3rd period.
Yaniv Perets remained perfect in the 3rd period, stopping all 10 shots thrown his way in the final frame and each of the 29 shots he faced through 60 minutes for his 2nd shutout of the Okanagan Cup and his 5th win. Jay Thomson made his 1st start with the Warriors in the tournament, stopping 34 of the 40 shots he faced in his 1st loss of the Okanagan Cup.
FINAL SCORE: 6-0 Vees
SHOTS ON GOAL: 40-29 Vees
1) Yaniv Perets (29 saves on 29 shots)
2) Liam Malmquist (0-2-2)
3) Stefano Bottini (1-1-2)
VEES PP: 1/4
VEES PK: 5/5
The Vees (8-0-0-0) remain on home ice as the Okanagan Cup continues on as they host the Salmon Arm Silverbacks (1-4-0-0) on Friday night at the South Okanagan Events Centre. Puck drop is slated for 6:00 PM with the game available with a FREE audio stream at mixlr.com/pentictonvees as well as on pay-per-view at HockeyTV.com.