The West Kelowna Warriors completed the two game sweep of the Salmon Arm Silverbacks with a 4-3 victory on Saturday night.
1) BODIES IN FRONT
During the two games with the Silverbacks, the Warriors have done a terrific job in creating traffic in front of the ‘Backs netminders. Tonight, both the Warriors 2nd and 3rd goals were a direct result of bodies in front and going to the goal. Matt Monk’s point shot was never seen by Silverback goaltender Michael Botiz as it drifted in through his blocker side.
Bryon Moradsashi’s point shot found it’s way off of a Silverback’s stick and in with heavy traffic in front. The net drive has been a big part of the Warriors success over the last two pre season tilts and will need to be in order to win in such a tough division like the Interior Division in the BCHL is.
2) GOALTENDING (AGAIN)
It seems like after each and every game, the main story is goaltending and it was no different tonight. Despite the three 3rd period goals from the Silverbacks, Warrior netminding was superb again tonight, starting with Matt Vernon stopping all 17 shots he faced in his 32+ minutes of action tonight. He looked calm and square to every puck he faced.
Shane Farkas took over for the Warriors after that and had to make a couple of difficult with really no way of him stopping the three ‘Backs goals that went in. Farkas looked very calm and collecting in his crease as well and looked that way throughout the duration of his start yesterday as well.
3) BUDDING RIVALRY
I suppose you technically have a rivalry with everyone inside your division (or league for that matter) but it seems as though the one between the Warriors and Silverbacks could be rather good one to watch. Two very entertaining pre season matchups with each game having it’s moments of nastiness (tonight being more prominent) and both teams seeming to have a general dislike for each other on the ice.
Tonight, tempers boiled over early in the first when Ryley Booth flattened a Warrior forward in his own end and Tyler Anderson took exception and dropped the gloves. Anderson was given five for fighting and was kicked out of the game while Booth remained in, only getting a double minor for roughing. There was certainly quite a bit of pushing and shoving after every whistle and I’m sure that is the way things will stay throughout the regular season.
The Warriors are back on the ice on Wednesday night when they host the Penticton Vees for the 2nd time this pre season and will look to avenge an earlier 2-0 loss in their first pre season game. FASTHockey will provide pay-per-view coverage while I am hopeful to get the Warriors Internet Network up and running to provide free audio. Puck drop is at 7:00 pm while Sheldon Bank and I are on the headsets at 6:55 pm.