Venue: Cominco Arena
Game Time: 7:30pm
Season Series: (Vees 5-0-0-0) 3-1 Vees Sept 26th, 6-2 Vees Nov 1st, 3-1 Vees Dec 3rd, 6-3 Vees Jan 17th, 4-3 Vees Jan 30th, Jan 31st at Trail, Feb 14th at Penticton
Vees Road Record: 17-5-1-1
Vees Record vs. Interior Division: 22-6-1-0
Vees Leading Scorer: Lewis Zerter-Gossage 17-25-42
Trail Smoke Eaters Home Record: 10-11-0-1
Trail Smoke Eaters Record vs. Interior Division: 5-19-0-1
Smoke Eaters Leading Scorer: Charlie Zuccarini 27-30-57
The Penticton Vees look for their sixth straight win and a weekend sweep of the Trail Smoke Eaters when the travel to the West Kootenays. The Vees held court on home ice Friday, fending off the Smokies 4-3 at the SOEC.
Trail was a handful Friday despite missing eight regulars from their line-up. The Smokies pressed in the first period and went to the dressing with a 2-1 lead. The Vees turned things around with a three-goal second period and then held at the end after a late push by Trail.
Connor Chartier, Tyson Jost, Mitch Newsome and Dakota Conroy scored in the win. Craig Martin and Kienan Scott (2) scored for the Smokies in the loss.
Last night was the Vees 12th straight win against Trail dating back to March 10th, 2013. It also was their seventh straight at the SOEC, as Trail hasn’t won in Penticton since Mar 1st, 2013. However, the scene shifts to the always challenging Cominco Arena.
The Vees have won both games in Trail, dowsing the Smokies 3-1 on September 26th and most recently 6-3 on January 17th. The last encounter wasn’t void of drama, as the Vees had to come back from deficits of 2-1 and 3-2 in the second period en route a 4-3 lead through 40. I wrote about the second period in this season series on the blog earlier today. After Friday, the Vees have now outscored Trail 11-4 in the second period; that’s five second periods. The Smokies have proven that they can play you tough earlier but they’ve struggled sustaining that level of play / urgency over sixty-minutes.
Jack Ramsey will draw back into the line-up tonight; well at least he will be a game-time decision. Ramsey was sidelined with an illness yesterday and likely the same one that affected Shayne Gwinner on Wednesday. Ramsey will at least dress for warm-up and the team will a base a decision on how he feels after that.
Hunter Miska will get the start in goal after spelling off Brendan Barr in the final two periods in Friday’s win. Miska was nearly perfect as he was 18 for 19 in two periods for his BCHL beast fifth shutout.