The West Kelowna Warriors have put an end to another Penticton Vees winning streak.
A 4-3 victory on a controversial goal snapped the Vees’ undefeated streak at six games in the South Okanagan Events Centre Saturday night. Warriors forward Brayden Gelsinger redirected a Rylan Yaremko shot with 36 seconds remaining in the game. The goal was initially waved off by the referee to the left of the goal as it was deemed to go in from a high stick, but then the four-man officiating crew discussed the play near the penalty box and changed the original ruling causing the Warriors to jump in their bench.
“We thought it was a high stick,” said Vees co-captain Cody DePourq, adding that the referee told him the linesman from the blueline made the call that the goal was good.
DePourcq said he felt the Vees played well the first two periods in which they received an opening period goal from Tyson Jost, assisted by Patrick Newell and Demico Hannoun. Newell, who extended his point streak to 15 games with the assist, then gave the Vees a 2-0 lead on the power play as he circled his way towards the crease from the side and beat Andy Desautels five-hole. The Vees headed into the dressing room during the second intermission with a two-goal lead.
In the third period, Steen Cooper was called for high sticking four minutes into the frame and DePourcq said the timing of it was bad. The Warriors got a goal on the man advantage from Graydon Robinson, then less than three minutes later, Kylar Hope shoveled a rebound with his backhand over Hunter Miska to tie the game at two.
“They took off with it,” said DePourcq, adding that the Warriors gained momentum after that first goal. “Our third period has to be better. We had some poor shifts and we can’t make mistakes against a team like that.”
Scoring the Vees’ third goal was Riley Alferd, who beat Desautels five-hole to knot the score at three. Miska finished with 13 saves.
The Warriors snapped the Vees’ 13-game win streak on Nov. 5 with a 4-3 decision.