FPC: GM 2 Preview

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GM 1 RECAP

Season Series
Jan 5th 3-2 (2 OT) Vees (SOEC)
Jan 11th2-1 Eagles (South Surrey Arena)

Fred Page Cup Schedule
Game 1 5-2 Eagles  (SSA)
Game 2 Saturday, April 13th (SSA)
Game 3 Monday, April 15th (SOEC)
Game 4 Tuesday, April 16th (SOEC)
Game 5**Thursday, April 18th (SSA)
Game 6** Sunday, April 21st (SOEC)
Game 7** Monday, April 22nd (SSA)

** If necessary
Games in Surrey are at 7:15pm
Games three & four in Penticton are at 7pm; game six is at 5pm

FT_TheNumb3rs-shdwV2 Vees power-play: 11-44 (25%) Road: 5-20 (25%)

Vees penalty-kill: 32-36 (88.89%) Road:  17-20 (85%)

Eagles power-play: 11-61 (18.03%) Home: 5-34 (14.71%)

Eagles penalty-kill: 35-39 (89.74%)  Home:22-23 (95.65%)

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The Penticton Vees are looking for a split before leaving the Lower Mainland. If they can even the series tonight than they take home-ice advantage with them for games Three and Four on Monday and Tuesday.

Special teams was the difference in Game One, as the Eagles scored twice on the power-play and also had a short-handed goal in the first period. Michael Stenerson continued his torrid play, with two more goals last night and now has five in his last two games; he was scoreless in the three games prior. Stenerson’s efforts masked the fact that Adam Tambellini and Brady Shaw only had one assist  between each other.

Tonight is one of those “swing games” that come up in best-of-seven playoff series. A win and it’s advantage Vees, but a loss and they’re starring at a two-game hole. No need to panic, as Game One’s score wasn’t indicative of the play. The Vees had  plenty of opportunities, out-shot the Eagles and held them to just 25; 24 if you discount the empty-net goal.

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I think we all know what needs to be better and that’s team discipline. Sure, a couple of the calls were borderline but the Vees know they can’t afford to have another parade to the penalty box.On the broadcast we talked about, despite it struggles, how threatening the Eagles power-play was and they proved that in a hurry.One would think the law of averages would have things even out tonight and no, I don’t expect to see another double-minor called against the Vees.

The Vees are a team that knows a thing or two about bouncing back. In the regular season after a loss, the Vees were 13-4-0-2 and outscored their opponents 80-50 in those 19 games. That’s an average of 4.21 goals per game and just over two and a half against; good numbers. Those stats tell me this team is very good at playing with an edge; a chip on their shoulder. Their goal was taking both games in Surrey before the series started, but taking a split is still something to that should get you excited. At this point in the season, playing against the best team in the regular season, a split after two games is nothing to hang your head about.

The Vees will also need to do a better job of getting to net in Game Two. They had their chances to get to secondary opportunities but came up short. Countless times there was a puck loose at the top of the crease or in the slot but the Vees couldn’t negotiate the heavy traffic.The positive is the fact they were still generating scoring chances in scoring areas; if they weren’t then it would be trouble. The coaching staff has talked at length about bearing down and executing in key situations. The Vees have done that in their first two rounds after their struggles late in the regular season. Can they turn it around here in Game Two?

Keys: Net presence-Bearing Down-Walk the Fine Line

Playoff Scoring

Louie Nanne 5-6-11 Sam Mellor 4-6-10

Wade Murphy 4-6-10 Brad McClure 5-4-9

Jedd Soleway 4-5-9 Brock Balson 5-3-8

James De Haas 3-5-8 Ryan Gropp 3-5-8

John Siemer 3-5-8 Travis Blanleil 1-4-5

Sean Flanagan 1-4-5 Troy Stecher 0-5-5

Thomas Nitsche 0-4-4 Mike Rebry 0-3-3

Cody DePourcq 1-1-2 Bryan Sinz 0-2-2

Rob Mann 0-1-1

Goaltending

Chad Katunar 8-2 / 2.33 GAA / .919 SV%

FT_TheOtherGuys-shdwV2 Give the Eagles credit for a crafty performance in Game One. They cashed-in on the chances they got and maybe could be labeled as opportunistic. Hey, they had some good spurts in the Vees zone and were dynamite in the special teams department. But no way did they out-play the Vees in Game One and probably know they will have to even be better in Game Two.

I talk about the Vees out shooting the Eagles, but this is nothing new when talking about Surrey. In the regular season, the Eagles were out-shot in 29 games but their record in those games was 15-8-3-3. Maybe it’s not about the quantity of shots but the quality.

Michael Stenerson was terrific and now leads the BCHL in scoring with 17 points; one up on teammate Brady Shaw. Shaw and Adam Tambellini were solid in Game One but had a quiet night on the score-sheet. That doesn’t mean I don’t think they were good, as Shaw had a couple great looks on goal, including an eye-popping deke. Tambellini had a couple threatening chances on the power-play and off the rush. But definitely it was Stenerson stealing the spotlight in Game One.

The Eagles also got a great effort from the blue-line, as Devon Toews easily olayed over thirty-five minutes and didn’t appear to leave the ice late in the third period. I thought Dan O’Keefe and Craig Wyszomirski settled down and played well after a few shaky moments in the first period. Remember, the Eagles had their fair share of turnovers early in the game as they were adjusting to the Vees fore-check pressure. Give them credit, as they did find a way to cope with it and were sound in their own end in the final forty-minutes. They blocked a tonne of shots as well when the Vees were pressing in the second and early part of the third period. Some great defensive plays late as well, when the Vees had the net-empty, including a nice diving poke by Brady Shaw.

 Maybe not his best playoff performance, but Michael Santaguida again held the opposition under two goals, the sixth straight game he’s done that and in the end kept the Vees from tying the game. Late in the second when the Vees were buzzing, Santaguida managed to come up with some big saves, one of Michael Rebry in particular. He did seem a little sloppy with his puck playing but it didn’t cost him anything and to his credit, made some nice plays too. A solid performance from their goaltender but the scary thing is, he probably could have been better. The Vees will have their hands full again tonight.

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About frodgers

Director of Broadcasting & Media Relations for the Penticton Vees
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