The Penticton Vees are looking for their 10th straight win tonight when the visit the Chilliwack Chiefs at the Prospera Centre in the Fraser Valley. The Vees extended their win streak to nine games on Friday, coming from behind to beat the West Kelowna Warriors 4-3 in OT. Scott Conway scored the winning-goal 13-seconds into the four-on-four frame.
The Chiefs are coming off a 6-1 win in Surrey last night, as they had six different players score in the win, including defenseman Mark Esposito who picked up a goal and two helpers. That win snapped a two-game slide, as the Chiefs had dropped their last two games to Langley in a home and home set last week.
There will be a new face in the Vees line-up, as forward Luke Voltin will make his debut up front. Voltin was officially acquired by the Vees Saturday morning from Langley for the CHL listed playing rights to defenseman Griffin Foulk. Voltin had one goal and one assist in seven games with the Rivermen this season. In fact, he scored the game-winning goal just last night for the Rivermen, in their 3-0 shutout win over the Wenatchee Wild.
Voltin broke into the BCHL last year with the Vernon Vipers, where he had 10 goals and 26 points in 44 games. Oddly enough, Voltin scored the overtime goal in game five against the Vees last spring in the Interior Division Final. What’s even weirder is the fact his winner went off of Demico Hannoun’s leg and in. Hannoun is going to be Voltin’s line-mate tonight.
Voltin will add some good size (6’0, 195) and experience up front for a younger forward group the Vees have this year. He’ll wear number 11 and skate alongside Hannoun and Dixon Bowen.
The only other change to the Vees line-up will come in goal, as Anthony Brodeur is in search of his seven straight win in as many starts. Brodeur is 7-0 with a 1.43 goals-against average and a .943 save-percentage. Brodeur backed-up Zach Driscoll last night who won in his home debut, kicking out 25 of 28 shots.
Gabe Bast remains out on the blue-line, as he’s nursing a lower-body injury. Chris Gerrie now joins him on the sidelines, as Gerrie tweaked something in his lower-body during Friday’s game. Three of the Vees four forward lines will have a new look to it tonight.
Tyson Jost and Scott Conway have been red-hot, as they sit first and second in the BCHL scoring race. Jost is atop of the table with nine goals and 21 points and Conway is second also with nine goals and 19 points. Conway is riding a nine-game point streak which dates back to September 16th. Dante Fabbro has quietly gone about a seven-game point streak and is the highest scoring defenseman in the BCHL.
The Chiefs have an offensive weapon of their own in Vimal Sukumaran. The rookie forward is sixth in the league scoring race with nine goals and 16 points and is riding a 10 game point streak.
They also added a dynamic forward in Darien Craighead to help out with the offensive production. Craighead had goal and an assist in his Chiefs debut on Friday and so far this year has six points in five games. The move came at a cost thought, as skilled defenseman Carter Cochrane was set back the other way to the Cowichan Valley Capitals.
The Chiefs are 3-2-0-0 in their last five games and visit Langley next Wednesday before hosting Alberni Valley on Friday. The Chiefs enter tonight’s game tied for third place in the Mainland Division with 11 points, three points back of the first place Rivermen.