GM #47 Post-Game: Vees Frustrated Again

Game Recap 

Boxscore 

Penticton Herald “Vees in 5” Highlights  

  • Salmon Arm seems to be the Vees kryptonite this season. Four games, four losses, all painful in their own way. The last two have stung a little extra, as they’ve dropped two meetings in the last two weeks to Salmon Arm and both by one-goal. January 18th it was an overtime loss, on a goal by Landon Smith in the final moments of four-on-four; that after the Vees killed-off a five-minute penalty. Tonight, it’s Smith scoring the eventual game-winner again, on a power-play late in the second after the Vees had a goal disallowed. Some salt  in the wound there.
  • Pre-game I wrote the Vees needed to continue their consistent approach if they were going to push their win streak to three. I thought they had a good push in the second and third period and the stats reflected that (shots were 16-9 over the last two periods) but there in lies the problem: a strong forty-minute effort. They weren’t awful in the first but just struggled to get out of their zone cleanly, which in turn, never gave their forwards a chance to get going. On more than one occasion in the first, the Vees breakout was stalled by errant passes or poor decision-making. It was like they were stuck in second gear.
  • Despite those struggles, they only did surrender six shots in the first and the only quality scoring chance was Landon Smith clanging a wrist-shot off the post. If the puck was turned over, and that did happen more than once, the Vees did a good job of collapsing back and taking away shooting lanes. Hey, when they were making mistakes, they at least were quick to recover.
  • By watching the first period, you got the sense this game was setting up to be like so many others this month: tight-checking, physical and with a noticeable grinding element. Not many good looks came off the rush tonight. Just look at the boxscore, neither team hit double-digits in shots in any of the three periods.
  • The Vees best chance in the first was when Riley Alferd found a soft spot in front of the net but couldn’t get his back-hand attempt on goal, as he was being harassed by a defender. I liked what Alferd brought tonight, as he seemed to be around the net a lot. Coaches took notice too, as he was being double-shifted in the third and put into the top-six, with Shane McColgan in the penalty-box.
  • The disallowed goal. Something that will be talked about quite a bit over the next 24-48 hours. So to recap, Max Coatta had his shot from the slot, rang off both posts before shooting out of the net. Initially the red light went on, Vees started to celebrate but the play continued. Once the play was blown dead, the referee quickly conversed with one lines-man and waved-off the play, deeming the puck never went across the line. OK, my question is why wouldn’t you consult with the goal judge? His job is to tell you yes or no, in regards to the puck crossing the goal-line. His sole job. He had his goal-light on and if you’re chatting with the lines-man wouldn’t you want to quickly ask what he (the goal judge) saw? The referee’s explanation was along the lines of being confident enough in the call to not confer with the goal judge. Then if you’re “confident enough,” why the heck are you conferring with the lines-man? That right there shows that you’re not 100 percent sure about your call. So if you have the slightest shred of doubt, wouldn’t you want to take every step possible to make the right call? The overhead camera they showed in building, showed the puck curling around the inside of the net, and therefore over the goal-line before rimming out; like a ball rimming out in basketball. But the overhead shows separation between the puck and goal-line and quite a bit at that, before the puck rims out. Now we wait on the highlights to show what we in the rink got to look at during the game.
  • I get hindsight is 20-20 and the referees don’t have the advantage of video review and have to make the call with what they saw. But there was some doubt on the officiating crew and the goal judge didn’t hesitate at all in putting the goal light on. My point again, why not cover all the bases to make sure you have the right call?
  • That play had quite the impact on the game, as the Silverbacks ended up scoring a late goal in the second on a four-minute power-play. The game potentially goes from 1-1 to 2-0 and at the end of the second period. Things could have been much different if that goal would have counted. Frustrating.
  • Credit the Silverbacks, as they picked up a win, despite missing Evan Anderson, Alex Gillies, Colton Thibault and Adam Clark.  Anderson and Gillies have 41 goals and 95 points between them and Clark was 3-0 against the Vees and had a .935 save-percentage against Penticton. Troy Mick pre-game said his team needed to adopt a pack like mentality, as they needed to take away time and space from Penticton and frustrate their opponent. They did just that, as the Vees had some struggles early breaking out and getting speed generated through the neutral zone.
  • Salmon Arm played a pretty good road game, as they didn’t complicate things one bit. If they had an opening they took it, other than that it was simply chip and chase hockey from the neutral zone forward. They were content in chipping pucks into the corners and sending in one and sometimes two fore-checkers. They didn’t chance it too much off the rush, as they weren’t forcing things.
  • The Vees at times were guilty of hanging out on the perimeter but their biggest issue was their lack of execution. Before he scored in the third period, Brad McClure had three quality looks at the net but kept shooting high. I touched on Riley Alferd in the first period, Brett Beauvais had a great look in the third on a power-play and Cody DePourcq had a great chance in-close in the second; all of those chances never forced the goaltender into making a save. They all missed. There was a conscious effort to get to the hard to reach scoring areas, but once there the Vees struggled to get pucks on target.
  • A bit of a roller coaster for the Vees recently, as they struggled to find their offensive touch during a recent three-game slide But then scored 11 goals in their last two, only to muster one goal tonight; the Vees fourth one-goal loss in January.
  • Four times the Vees were involved in a 2-1 game in January but only won one. They finish January with a respectable 5-3-1-1 record but were 2-3-1-1 in one-goal games this month.
  • It’s not easy this time of year, nor should it be, but the Vees need to find a way to get more pucks to the net. They were solid on the back-end only coughing up 15 shots tonight but had just 6, 7 and 9 shots in the three periods tonight. Salmon Arm blocked a lot of shots tonight, especially late, so you have to commend them for that. But, the Vees will need to find a way to get the puck through bodies and make the goalie sweat a little.
  • I also liked Max Coatta tonight, who returned to the line-up after a six-game absence. Despite missing all that time, Coatta looked very good  and had a couple of quality scoring chances. He said to me in our interview he wanted to keep things very simple, and ease his way back into the line-up. Well he went full bore tonight, as he was all over the place, especially in the offensive zone and was not shy about firing the puck; he’ll only get better the more he plays. A good sign? He didn’t shy away from the high traffic areas.
  • The Vees are now 1-9-1-1 when trialing after two periods, opposed to 22-0-1-2 when leading after two. Not saying this team doesn’t have it in them to comeback but right now, statistically speaking, they can’t afford to play catch up hockey ,especially late. Like most, the Vees are much better when playing with the lead but comeback hockey doesn’t seem to be in the cards. They need to find a way to get on better footing tomorrow, especially it being a road game and against a very good home team.
  • Shane McColgan picked up a misconduct and a minor penalty after a shoving match with Brendan Kennedy at centre ice late in the second. It was clear Kennedy came on the ice to do one thing and that was to get underneath McColgan’s skin. It worked. The Vees need McColgan to shy away from that “extracurricular” stuff and the verbal sparing matches and focus more on the play between the whistles. He’s a dynamic player who can be a difference maker, and that can be huge during this stretch drive, but he’s not doing any good sitting in the penalty box for 14 minutes. The Vees need the forward on the ice, hurting the opposition on the scoreboard. That’s where you can get your revenge.
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About CBeauchemin

Director of Broadcasting & Communication for the Penticton Vees
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2 Responses to GM #47 Post-Game: Vees Frustrated Again

  1. Pingback: GM #48 Notes: Vees @ Silverbacks | The Three V's Blog

  2. Anonymous says:

    McCoglan needs to keep his mouth shut, he’s always yapping about something, to the officials or the opposition.

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