The Salmon Arm Silverbacks endured a rough weekend of BCHL Hockey, first succumbing to the Langley Rivermen at home and then being shut out by the Vernon Vipers the following night.
The Rivermen came to town on Friday, Nov. 29, to play the Silverbacks in front of just over 1,000 fans at the Shaw Centre. The teams sized each other up over the course of a scoreless first period. The visitors broke the deadlock with a goal from Matthew Hubbarde nine minutes into the second frame.
Hubbarde’s goal remained the only one of the game until his teammate Devin Leduc scored with less than seven minutes on the game clock. Leduc’s goal kicked off a scoring frenzy that lasted until the game’s final seconds. First, Joseph Musa of the Rivermen scored on the power play to leave the score 3-0 for the visitors.
Down three goals and with only five minutes to play, the Silverbacks faced long odds but quickly got to work. Luke Mylymok scored for the home team and Noah Wakeford followed up with a second goal for the ‘Backs just over a minute later.
The Silverbacks struggled to get the equalizer and send the game into overtime, but Langley scored again with only four seconds to go, leaving the final at 4-2 in the visitors’ favour.
The following night, the Vipers dealt the ‘Backs their fifth consecutive loss.
Elan Bar-lev-Wise ripped a shot over Ethan Langenegger’s glove to give Vernon the lead. The insurance goal came from Dawson Holt, his eighth of the year, off a scramble late in the second period.
The game featured a spirited second-period scrap between the Vipers’ Jackson Caller and Mylymok, with Caller awarded the decision. Following the game, Mylymok left for the Team Canada West Selection Camp in Calgary after being invited to try to earn a place on the roster for the upcoming World Jr. A Challenge
Langenegger made 29 saves as Salmon Arm fell to 19-10-11, good for third place in the Interior Division, two points behind the Trail Smoke Eaters.
The Silverbacks will try and snap their slump on Vancouver Island. Salmon Arm visits Nanaimo Friday, the Alberni Valley Bulldogs Saturday and the Cowichan Valley Capitals in Duncan Sunday. The ‘Backs will also travel to Wenatchee on Friday, Dec. 13, before closing out the first half of the season with a home date Sunday, Dec. 15, against Trail. Face-off will be at 3 p.m.