Captain Brad McClure kicked-off the comeback attempt, then finishing it off in double-overtime, as the Penticton Vees rallied for a 4-3 win over the Powell River Kings at the SOEC Saturday.
The win keeps the Vees perfect home record intact, as their record moves to 5-0-0. The victory also snaps the Kings seven game win streak and the Vees also hand them their first road loss of the season. As a franchise, the Kings still have yet to win at the SOEC since the building opened in 2008.
The visitors did open the scoring midway through the first on the power-play. Ryan Scarfo picked up a rebound behind the Vees net and tucked a wrap-around attempt just inside the post and past a fallen Hunter Miska at 9:33. Jeremy Leclerc blasted a point-shot off the end-boards and the puck bounced right to Scarfo who quickly tucked it in.
That was all the scoring in a tight-checking first period, as the two top defensive teams in the BCHL flexed their muscle in the opening period; shots even at eight apiece.
The Vees started to apply pressure in the second period and their efforts were finally rewarded late in the frame. McClure worked the puck to the point, where Paul Stoykewych put a low slap-shot to the net. Ben Dalpe was parked out front and got just enough of his stick on the puck to redirect past Jonah Imooh at 18:58; his sixth of the season.
After the game produced just two goals through the first two periods, the two teams combined for four in the third period alone. The Kings used some puck luck to strike twice in just over three minutes to go up by a pair midway through the stanza.
On a freak play, the Kings Kyle Chatham dumped the puck in from the neutral zone but it then darted off a stanchion behind the Vees goal and out into the slot. Miska victimized by the bad bounce, as he vacated his net to play the dump-in behind the goal. Luke Nogard was the beneficiary of the bounce and put the Kings ahead at 8:23. On another strange play in front of the Vees net, the Kings pulled ahead by two at 11:37. Jarid Lukosevicius threw a centering pass towards the top of the crease. The puck rattled off a skate before falling right to Jarryd Leung at the side of the goal for a tap-in.
Down two inside the final minute of regulation, the Vees lifted Miska for the extra skater and it paid off, twice. First, McClure made it a one-goal game with forty-one seconds left, when he jammed a loose puck over the goal-line at 19:19. Anthony Conti made a nice play to charge out of the corner to force a scramble at the side of the net.
The Vees then pressed for the equalizer in the dying moments of regulation. Brett Beauvais made a nice play at the blue-line to keep the puck alive, before firing a shot towards a crowd in front of the Kings net. The puck careened off a leg in front and right to a pinching Stoykewych on the far side of the zone. The Vees defender, with an open net in front of him, rifled the puck into the open side, sending the SOEC into a frenzy. The Vees tying the game with just three seconds left on the clock.
After a scoreless first four-on-four overtime period, the two teams needed to go to double-overtime to decide a winner. Skating three-on-three, Brad McClure picked up the puck in the neutral zone, broke into the Kings zone on a partial break, and as he was off-balance, put a wrist-shot up and over the shoulder of Imooh at 3:48. The Captain’s second of the game and team leading eighth to cap off a memorable comeback at the SOEC.
Score: 4-3 Vees (2OT)
Shots: 38-25 Vees
Power-Play: Vees 0/3 Kings 1/2
Three Stars: 1) Brad McClure 2) Jonah Imooh 3) Paul Stoykewych (corrected)