Four unanswered third-period goals lifted the Vernon H&L Glass Junior Vipers A Development team to an 8-3 win over the visiting Kelowna Rockets Development A-2 squad in Okanagan Minor Hockey Atom Development action at Kal Tire Place.
Both teams came out with a strong defensive effort, and Vernon was helped with solid goaltending from Lucas Gosselin. Kelowna opened the scoring with their only goal of the first period by Cooper McGrady. However, Vernon responded with a tally from Trent Keenan, assisted by Jake Black. The first period finished at 1-1.
The second period saw both teams get their feet moving, and Vernon notched a few more goals. Bryden Ezekiel put one home off an assist from Ben Tyssen, Blake Sakakibara scored with assists to Harrison Sharman and Nathan Sluggett, and Aidan Boyd had a great individual effort to add to the Vernon score. Kelowna saw their team score twice, one from McGrady (2) and from Aidan Potash. The second finished with Vernon up 4-3.
In the third, Vernon took over, with Gosselin shutting the door the rest of the way. The H&L Glass Junior Vipers added to the lead with markers from Sharman (assist to Nathan Sluggett and TJ Podollan), Ben Tyssen (from Sakakibara and Cole Pinette), Sakakibara’s second (from Sharman and Black), and Tyssen (from Reed Witham and Cohen Bentham).
The Junior Vipers are on the road this weekend as they travel to West Kelowna for a rematch of the Harvest Classic Tournament final in Vernon, won by the Snakes 7-6.