The Vees are back on the road after returning early Monday morning.
After wins in Powell River (3-1 on Sept.16) and in overtime in Cowichan Valley (4-3 on Sept. 18) the Vees take their 3-1-0 record to Chilliwack for the Bauer BCHL Showcase on Wednesday. They open with a 10 a.m. tilt against the Langley Rivermen, who have won two of their three games.
“We are going to have a really tough game,” said Vees coach-general manager Fred Harbinson. “We’ve had a short turnaround here. Playing Langley, a team that is off to a good start.”
The Rivermen are led offensively by Dartmouth commit Ryan Barrow, who has three goals and five points in five games. In goal, Bo Didur has played all their games and has a 2.67 goals against average with a .918 save percentage.
On Friday at 4 p.m., the Vees have a rematch with the Prince George Spruce Kings, who have four losses and a tie.
“It’s a team that’s desperate for a win,” said Harbinson, whose team defeated the Spruce Kings in Prince George 4-0 on Sept. 10 to start the season.
The newest member of the Penticton Vees, Kenny Johnson. Katya Slepian/Black Press
Chong Lee and Brett Mennear lead the Spruce Kings with two goals and three points in five games. Goalie Stefan Wornig has seen action in all their games and has three losses and a tie. His goals against average is 4.46 with an .892 save percentage.
Harbinson was happy with his team collecting two of three wins on the road. Grant Cruikshank scored a hat trick over the Capitals, while Chris Klack was the OT hero. Captain Nicholas Jones collected three assists in the win.
The Vees’ power play is getting better. After going 0-for-9 in their first two games, it went three-for-10 in their last two. Cruikshank and Jones were the scorers.
“We just need to be a plus on our special teams every night,” said Harbinson. “Special teams is probably the biggest work in progress early in the year. Just trying to figure out the personnel. What needs to be done on them more than what you’re opposition is doing. I think it’s coming along really well.”
The Vees roster sustained another injury as defenceman Gabe Bast got hurt during the first period in Powell River. He is out four to six weeks with an upper body injury.