MERRITT, B.C. – The Penticton Vees used three power play goals and a 37-save performance from Yaniv Perets to earn their third straight win in a 4-1 victory over the Merritt Centennials on Sunday afternoon at the Nicola Valley Memorial Arena.
The Vees were first to hit the scoreboard for the third straight game and came courtesy of a newcomer as Tyler Ho found the back of the net for his 1st goal as a Vee. Jay O’Brien sped into the offensive zone with a drop pass for Colton Kalezic, who left the puck for Ho in the slot as he snapped a shot past the blocker side of Centennials netminder Tanner Marshall at the 9:39 mark to open the scoring and give the Vees a 1-0 lead.
Penticton extended their advantage to 2-0 later in the period on the power play as Liam Malmquist doubled the lead. Danny Weight sent a pass through the middle of the ice with a streaking Malmquist gathering in the neutral zone and working his way into the offensive end, sending a shot from the left face-off circle up and off the glove side shoulder of Marshall and past the goal line for his 4th goal of the season and a 2-0 Vees lead at the 15:52 mark.
The power play helped the Vees to a 3-0 advantage at the 9:49 mark of the 2nd period as Evan McIntyre tallied for the second game in a row. David Silye threw a wrist shot on goal from the right point that was stopped by Marshall with the rebound laying loose on the blocker as McIntyre came in from the blue line and pushed the puck past the goal line for his 4th goal of the season and a three-goal lead at the 9:49 mark of the middle stanza.
Another man advantage extended the Vees lead to 4-0 late in the 2nd period at the 18:09 mark as Danny Weight registered his 9th goal of the season. Malmquist took a Steve Holtz pass on the right-wing boards and went below the goal line before spinning a pass from behind the net to the glove side of Marshall where Weight deposited the puck into the back of the net to make it a 4-0 Vees advantage.
Yaniv Perets remained strong in the Vees net, turning aside all 24 shots he had faced through 40 minutes of play. The goaltender made a big stop on a partial breakaway from the left-wing side on Josh Kagan as he came down the wing with a shot from the left face-off circle before Perets denied him with his right shoulder.
Merritt did get on the scoreboard at the 3:19 mark of the third period and was the only goal to get by Perets as Kagan found the back of the net. After working his way down the left side, Kagan wristed a shot through Perets from the face-off circle to cut the Vees lead to 4-1, which would stand as the final score.
Yaniv Perets was terrific in the game, stopping 37 of the 38 shots he faced in his 8th win of the season while Tanner Marshall turned aside 38 of the 42 shots fired in his direction in his 4th loss of the season.
FINAL SCORE: 4-1 Vees
SHOTS ON GOAL: 42-38 Vees
VEES PP: 3/5
VEES PK: 4/4
1) Yaniv Perets (37 saves on 38 shots)
2) Liam Malmquist (1-1-2)
3) Josh Kagan (1-0-1)
Fortis Energy Player of the Game: Daniel Tkac (0-0-0)
The Vees (14-3-1-0) remain on the road for another two-game set away from home, starting on Friday night against the Surrey Eagles (6-11-0-1) on the Lower Mainland. Puck drop is slated for 7:00 PM from the South Surrey Arena with the game being broadcasted on EZ Rock AM 800 as well as HockeyTV.com beginning with the pre-game show at 6:40 PM with the Voice of the Vees, Trevor Miller.