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Preview: Vees host Vipers in clash of BCHL titans

Penticton, BC: The Penticton Vees (35-10-2-3) swept their home and home series with the Trail Smoke Eaters to remain in top spot in the overall BCHL standings, and now face against the team just two points behind them, the Vernon Vipers (34-13-1-4).

Friday night, the Vees got a pair of power-play goals in the opening period from Wyatt Sloboshan and Cassidy Bowes to take a 2-0 lead into the first intermission. Penticton outshot Trail 12-6 through the first 20 minutes.

No goals came in the second period, but early in the third the Vees extended their lead. Owen Sillinger and Jonny Tychonick came in on a two-on-one rush as Sillinger fed the puck to Tychonick who beat Adam Marcoux by pulling the puck to his backhand for his ninth of the year.

Adam Scheel stopped all 23 shots he faced to record his third shutout of the season as the Vees sent nearly 3,000 fans home happy in their first game at the South Okanagan Events Centre in 20 days.

The win pushed the Vees to 75 points on the year, two clear of the Vipers were also in action last night. After the Langley Rivermen opened the scoring in the opening minutes, Vernon rattled off four straight goals to take a 4-1 lead into the intermission.

They would add another in the second period, before things got heated in the final frame. After  Langley forward Angus Crookshank was given a misconduct nine minutes into the period, Rivermen forward John Wojciechowski was give a five-minute major for checking from behind.

That set off a string of misconducts as 14 players overall in the third period would be sent to their respective locker rooms early.

Saturday signals the end of the season series between the Vees and Vipers who haven’t seen each other since December 9, a 4-0 Vipers win in Vernon. Overall, Penticton has played to two wins, a loss and two ties against the Vipers.

The two teams have been battling for top spot in the Interior Division and BCHL since the beginning of the season. Coming into January, the Vees were nine points behind Vernon for first in the division, and now find themselves two points ahead with two games in hand.

Team Statistics

Leading scorers

Penticton Vees

Owen Sillinger – 26 G 26 A 48 GP

Jonny Tychonick – 9 G 31 A 42 GP

Taylor Ward – 16 G 18 A 38 GP

Vernon Vipers

Jimmy Lambert – 18 G 25 A 49 GP

Brett Stapley – 23 G 28 A 46 GP

Jagger Williamson – 19 G 27 A 49 GP

Special Teams

Penticton Vees

Power play – 21.2% (4th in BCHL)

Penalty kill – 87.1% (1st in BCHL)

Vernon Vipers 

Power play – 20.4% (6th in BCHL)

Penalty kill – 83.8% (4th in BCHL)

Season series

October 7, 2017 – Vees 3 vs Vipers 2 Boxscore

October 8, 2017 – Vees 2 @ Vipers 2 Boxscore

November 10, 2017 – Vees 2 vs Vipers 2 Boxscore

November 11 2017 – Vees 4 @ Vipers 1 Boxscore

December 9, 2017 – Vees 0 @ Vipers 4 Boxscore

February 10, 2018 – Vees vs Vipers