Warriors, Vees Rivalry Renewed In Penticton Tonight

west-kelowna-shield-logo vs. Penticton Vees

The West Kelowna Warriors begin a stretch of six games away from Royal LePage Place as they begin that stretch with a trip to the South Okanagan Events Centre to face-off against the Penticton Vees on Saturday night.

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Season Series:

Friday, September 30th @ Royal LePage Place (3-1 Vees) (BOXSCORE)

Saturday, October 22nd @ Royal LePage Place (6-3 Vees) (BOXSCORE)

Tuesday, November 22nd @ Royal LePage Place (4-1 Vees) (BOXSCORE)

Wednesday, January 11th @ South Okanagan Events Centre (4-2 Vees) (BOXSCORE)

Saturday, January 21st @ South Okanagan Events Centre (6:00 PM)

Friday, February 17th @ South Okanagan Events Centre (7:00 PM)

Tuesday, February 21st @ Royal LePage Place (7:00 PM)

The Warriors and Vees will match up for the fifth time in a span of their seven game regular season series with Penticton winning each of the four matchups. The last one, which took place just over two weeks ago, was a 4-2 win in favour of the Vees with Penticton striking for three shorthanded goals in the game as the Warriors went 0/7 on the power play on the night. Chase Stevenson and Connor Sodergren tallied for the Warriors in the losing effort while Cole Demers made 37 saves on 40 shots in the losing cause for the Warriors.

The Warriors enter Saturday night’s game coming off of a 2-1 loss on Friday night at home to the Vernon Vipers. The Vipers scored two goals in the 2nd period before Quin Foreman tallied on his 21st goal of the season in the final minute of the period to get the game to a one goal score but the Warriors were unable to find the tying goal. Cole Demers made his first appearance against his former team and played very well making 35 saves on 37 shots in the defeat.

tale-of-the-tape-vs-pen-jan-21

With a hot streak coming to a cold spell in the likes of Connor Sodergren in Friday night’s game, his line mate Quin Foreman is on a pretty impressive streak of his own. The Norwood, Massachusetts native leads the Warriors in scoring with 21 goals and 52 points over his 42 games played this season and is currently riding a six-game point stretch. Over that six-game span, Foreman has tallied three goals (one each in his last three games) along with seven assists for 10 points in the last six games and sits in 11th in the BCHL in scoring.

The Warriors begin a stretch of six games away from Royal LePage Place that starts in Penticton tonight and it won’t be an easy one for the defending National Champions. After Saturday night’s contest against the Vees, the Warriors head out to the Island to face-off against the Island Division’s top team in the Victoria Grizzlies before jumping over to Powell River to battle the Kings, who are in second place in the division, followed up by a trip to Chilliwack for a Sunday evening affair against the Chiefs. The following Wednesday, West Kelowna returns to the Interior to face-off against the Vernon Vipers then on Friday go to Merritt to battle the Centennials. Not an easy road ahead for the Warriors but a good test with playoff hockey nearing.

The Penticton Vees enter Saturday night’s affair well rested as they have not played since last Saturday, a 6-0 defeat of the Alberni Valley Bulldogs at the SOEC one week ago. Vees captain Nic Jones tallied twice in the game while Matt Gosiewski, Taylor Sanheim, Joe Leahy and Mitch Meek all added singles in the Vees triumphant effort. Mat Robson collected 24 saves in the shutout victory, his league-leading 26th win of the season and his 3rd shutout of the season, which ties him with Victoria’s Matthew Galajda and Wenatchee’s Anthony Yamnitsky for tops in the BCHL.

Speaking of Nic Jones, the Vees captain has found a bit of a scoring touch as of late with goals in two of his last three games. Two came shorthanded against the Warriors on the 11th of January while earning another two last Saturday against the Bulldogs. The 20-year-old forward leads the team in assists with 27 and also leads the Vees in points with 44. To add to his repertoire has been the fact he’s been a Warrior killer this season as Edmonton, AB native has seven goals and nine points in just four games over the course of the season series.

It’s likely the Warriors will see Mat Robson start tonight’s game in between the pipes for the Vees as the 20-year-old goaltender has started 16 of the team’s past 17 games and has gotten the call in each of the games against the Warriors this season and has been outstanding in the four games with a 4-0 record along with a 1.77 GAA and a .944 SV%. The Warriors will likely turn to Gabriel Morency for his 2nd start as a member of the team. His only game came on January 13th in a 5-2 win over the Surrey Eagles where the Quebec, Quebec native turned aside 24 of 26 shots for his first BCHL victory.

The Warriors and Vees get underway with a 6:00 PM puck drop tonight at the South Okanagan Events Centre with the pre-game festivities going at 5:50 PM on the Warriors Internet Network and hockeytv.com. The Warriors begin a three-game Island swing on Friday night when they head to Victoria to take on the Grizzlies in their next game of action.

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