The Silverbacks hit the road to West Kelowna Oct. 26 to play against the Warriors, taking a 4-1 loss that sets the record at 2-2 between these teams.
Lucas Cullen of the Warriors opened up the scoring just over five minutes in. Salmon Arm would even up the score off a goal from Yewta Plamondon for the Silverbacks’ lone goal of the evening and Plamondon’s first goal in the BCHL.
West Kelowna would come back and make it 2-1 late in the first as Mike Hardman took a pass from Willie Reim and fired it past Ethan Langenegger.
The second period saw one goal early on from Calvin Tilsley of the Warriors, and the game would be locked at 3-1 going into the third.
Nearly 36 minutes of ice time went by without a point from either side before Warriors’ Bennet Norlin scored on an empty net with a minute remaining, making it a 4-1 win for West Kelowna.
Smoked out in the third
The Trail Smoke Eaters rolled into Salmon Arm Oct. 27 to face off with the Silverbacks, and off the start it looked like it would be two losses in a row for the Silverbacks before a huge third-period comeback.
The first period was a bit of a heavy-handed one, as Trail and Salmon Arm players came close to blows and big hits rocked players from both teams. Trail would open up the scoring with Layne Sniher’s first goal of the season, making it 1-0 going into the second.
In the second, Salmon Arm took a streak of penalties that would see them go into some five-on-three play. Trail’s Kent Johnson would knock the puck past Silverbacks’ newly-signed goalie Matthew Armitage to make it 2-0 going into third.
While not a promising way to start the final period, the Silverbacks came into the third with victory on their minds. Just four minutes into the period, Logan Shaw started off Salmon Arm’s scoring after a hip-check left the opponents wide open.
After this early period goal, it was a tense 13 minutes before the Silverbacks went on an offensive push that would pay off big time.
With just over two minutes left, Aiden Jenner took a rebound from Andy Stevens and slapped the puck in to make it 2-2. Less than 30 seconds later, defenceman Sam MacBean took a pass from Jenner in the faceoff circle and sent a wrist-shot in for his first-ever BCHL goal to make it 3-2.
In a last-ditch attempt to regain their footing and send the game into overtime, Trail pulled their goalie in the final minutes. This just left their net wide open for Hudson Schandor to double the Silverbacks’ lead on an empty net, sealing the game at 4-2.
Spruce Kings dethroned
The Silverbacks played their third game over the course of three days on Sunday, Oct. 28, when they hosted the Prince George Spruce Kings at the Shaw Centre.
Prince George opened up the scoring right off the bat, with Dylan Anhorn scoring a wrap-around goal after a series of passes set him up.
Salmon Arm would put themselves on the board later in the first, with a pass from Akito Hirose going to Matthew Verboon, who put in his seventh of the season, tying Trevor Adams for the team’s top scorer.
The second period was a quiet one on the scoreboard, with no goals from either team.
There was a close call off a shot from Prince George, which was called a no-goal due to a player being offside.
Trevor Adams, not content to let Verboon tie him for goals scored, made a snipe in the third to inch out a one-goal lead for the Silverbacks. With no goals for the remainder of the period on either side, this point locked down a 2-1 victory for the ’Backs.
For the second week in a row, a Silverbacks’ skater received an honourable mention for the BCHL’s player of the week, this time for goaltender Ethan Langenegger In two games, Langnegger faced 64 shots and stopped 60 for an 0.938 save percentage and 2.02 goals against average. This season, Langenegger has the second-best goals-against stat amongst rookie goalies, is third in time played with 850 minutes and third in saves with 451.