The Penticton Vees couldn’t muster enough offence as they fell by a 4-1 score to the Nanaimo Clippers on Saturday night at the South Okanagan Events Centre.
It was a bit of a feeling-out process through the opening 20 minutes between the two teams that only see each other twice in the regular season. Nanaimo took an early lead in shots on goal and opened the scoring at the 11:07 mark of the first period.
A turnover in the offensive zone on a power play allowed Travis Walton to pick the puck up and carry into the Vees’ end on a shorthanded breakaway, beating Vees goaltender Yaniv Perets on the left with a shot from the edge of the face-off circle at the 11:07 mark to give the Clippers a 1-0 advantage.
Penticton began to bring more pressure in the second period, similar to their game on Friday night, a 2-1 loss to the Vernon Vipers in overtime, but couldn’t crack Clippers goaltender Jordan Naylor, who stopped all 15 shots he faced in the period as Nanaimo jumped ahead 2-0 at the 8:17 in the second.
Scott Mahovlich started the play in the neutral zone, passing to the middle of the ice as Liam Ryan took the feed and shot from the right face-off circle, beating Perets under his blocker to give the visitors a 2-0 advantage.
After that marker, the Vees started to press and put more pucks on net and got their best chance to score in the game on a power play. David Silye took a Lukas Sillinger pass at the front of the net from the slot and went from his forehand to his backhand before Naylor was able to get a piece of his blocker on the puck and keep the lead at two goals.
Nanaimo added to their lead at the 11-minute mark of the third period as the Vees continued to force pucks on Naylor. A power play generated the Clippers’ third goal as Ethan Scardina snapped a shot from the right face-off circle past the blocker side of Perets for the 3-0 advantage.
After an Ethan Martini fight, the Vees got some momentum and found the back of the net at the 15:05 mark of the third as Lukas Sillinger tallied his fifth goal of the season. David Silye chased down a puck on the right wing and passed to Sillinger who shot passed Naylor blocker-side to get the Vees on the board and make it a 3-1 lead.
The Vees went to a power play following the goal but the Clippers iced the game with an empty-net goal coming off the stick of Walton, his second of the game from just inside the blue line solidified a 4-1 Nanaimo final score.
Yaniv Perets turned aside 15 of the 18 shots thrown his way in his second loss of the season while Jordan Naylor stopped 28 of the 29 shots he faced in his sixth win.
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