PHOTO: Cherie Morgan/Cherie Morgan Photography
PENTICTON, B.C. – The Penticton Vees tallied three 2nd period goals and used a 19-save effort from Carl Stankowski to help them to their fourth consecutive victory in a 3-1 triumph over the Langley Rivermen on Wednesday night at the South Okanagan Events Centre.
It was each of the goaltenders that stood tall in the opening period with Carl Stankowski making saves on each of the 8 shots he faced, including making a big right pad stop on Langley defender Jake Livingstone as well as a glove save in tight on Jonathan Stein to keep the game at 0-0.
The best chance in the period for Langley came on their second power play of the night as Livingstone was set up in the slot with a one-time shot that rang off the post on the blocker side of Stankowski as the game remained scoreless.
Braedon Fleming also made 8 saves in the opening period for the Rivermen, with the Vees best opportunity to score coming in the dying moments of the 1st period. Danny Weight fed a pass to the slot where Tristan Amonte took the puck on his forehand before deking to the backhand as Fleming slid across and made a strong blocker side save to send the game into the 1st intermission at 0-0.
Stankowski had to be quick with a big save in the 2nd period as he sprawled across on the glove side to deny a 2-on-1 rush from the Rivermen before the Vees opened the scoring later in the period at the 13:20 mark courtesy of their captain.
Tyler Ho dug deep for the puck in the left-wing corner as he centered to the left face-off circle where David Silye collected and snapped a shot over the blocker side shoulder of Fleming for his 16th tally of the season to give Penticton a 1-0 advantage in the middle stanza.
The power play created a 2-0 lead in favour of the home side as Lukas Sillinger found the back of the net for his 16th goal of the season. Jackson Niedermayer took a Silye pass in the right-wing corner as he sent a pass in front that was deflected off of Sillinger’s stick and through the legs of Fleming at the 15:53 mark to give Penticton a 2-0 lead.
Liam Malmquist capped off a three-goal 2nd period for the Vees with Penticton’s second power play marker of the game. Nico Somerville spotted Malmquist with a pass at the top of the left face-off circle as the Vees forward crept in and lasered a shot over the blocker shoulder of Fleming for his 12th goal of the season and helped the Vees to a 3-0 advantage at the 17:19 mark of the 2nd period.
Langley broke the shutout at the 7:56 mark on a Vees turnover in their own end that gave the Rivermen a chance in tight. Tristan Fraser gathered the loose puck at the bottom of the right face-off circle and passed across the crease to Brendan Budy, who flipped a shot over the blocker side of Stankowski for a 3-1 score.
That would stand as the only blemish against the Vees netminder, who made his best save of the game with six and a half minutes remaining in the 3rd period on as Budy centered a pass from the left half boards to Fraser at the front of the net as he went to his backhand before Stankowski jetted out the right pad with a big save to keep the Vees two-goal lead intact and finalize a 3-1 victory.
Stankowski was terrific in the game, making 19 saves on 20 shots in his 8th victory for the Vees while Braedon Fleming turned aside 29 of the 32 shots thrown his way in his 15th loss of the season.
FINAL SCORE: 3-1 Vees
SHOTS ON GOAL: 32-20 Vees
VEES PP: 2/5
VEES PK: 2/2
1) David Silye (1-1-2)
2) Carl Stankowski (19 saves on 20 shots)
3) Tyler Ho (0-1-1)
Fortis Energy Player of the Game: Tristan Amonte (0-0-0)
The Vees (31-10-1-1) make their final trip of the regular season to the West Kootenays to face-off against the Trail Smoke Eaters (25-13-2-1-1) on Friday night. Puck drop is slated for 7:00 PM from the Trail Memorial Centre with the game being broadcasted on EZ Rock AM 800 as well as HockeyTV.com beginning with the pre-game show at 6:45 PM with the Voice of the Vees, Trevor Miller.
The Vees and Smoke Eaters will each be donning jerseys from their World Championships in 1955 and 1961, respectively, and wearing them for each game of the home-and-home set. The World Championship weekend returns to Penticton on Saturday night with a special ceremonial puck drop ahead of the 6:00 PM start time. Tickets are available at the Valley First Box Office as well as online at ValleyFirstTix.com.