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Pre-season perfection for Penticton Vees

Vees wrap up BCHL exhibition slate with home-and-home sweep of Salmon Arm Silverbacks
Penticton Vees forwards Ethan Mann (left) and Finlay Williams celebrate a goal against Salmon Arm during the Vees’ 5-2 BCHL pre-season win over the Silverbacks Saturday, Oct. 2, in Penticton. (Cherie Morgan Photography)

Four goals in the second period lifted the Penticton Vees to a 5-2 B.C. Hockey League pre-season home win over the Salmon Arm Silverbacks Saturday, Oct. 2, at the South Okanagan Events Centre.

The Vees, who beat Salmon Arm 6-4 in the Shuswap Friday, finished the exhibition schedule with a perfect 5-0 record. The Gorillas were 3-3.

Finlay Williams, Spencer Smith, Bradley Nadeau and Casey McDonald snapped a scoreless tie with the four second-period markers for the Vees Saturday. Smith added a second goal in the third, sandwiched between markers from Danny Ciccarello and Nathan Morin for the Silverbacks.

Liam Vanderkooi made 32 saves in goal for Salmon Arm while Colin Purcell picked up the win, making 29 stops.

Three unanswered goals from Ethan Mann, Thomas Pichette and Jackson Nieuwendyk in the final period gave the Vees the road win Friday at the Shaw Centre. Mann’s goal coming just 22 seconds after Simon Tassy’s third goal of the night had given the Silverbacks a 4-3 lead.

McDonald, with a deuce, and Josh Nadeau had the other goals for Penticton while Brandon Santa Juana had a goal for Salmon Arm.

Kaeden Lane made 13 saves for the win in the Vees’ goal while Owen Say stopped 32 shots in the loss for the Silverbacks.

The BCHL’s milestone 60th season kicks off Friday, Oct. 8. The Vees open up the regular season with their home opener on Oct. 8 as they host the Vernon Vipers at the SOEC. Puck drop is slated for 7 p.m. with the Vees honouring the 1985/86 Penticton Knights with a pre-game ceremony and puck drop while also donning special Knights jerseys for the occasion.

The Silverbacks will shift their focus to the Merritt Centennials when they open up the season on the road and kick things off for real on Oct. 9. Salmon Arm’s home opener is Friday, Oct. 15, against the Vipers.

READ MORE: Penticton Vees spar in Peaches Cup ahead of exhibition season

READ MORE: Salmon Arm Silverbacks defenceman drafted to NHL

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