A pair of goals from Matthew Culling weren’t enough to push the Vernon Vipers past the Trail Smoke Eaters Friday night.
The Vipers fell 3-2 in the shootout Dec. 10 despite out-shooting Trail 39-33.
After an uneventful first period despite two powerplay opportunities for the Vipers, including a five-minute major, the Vipers found the back of the net early in the second when Culling pounced on a rebound to make it 1-0. Three minutes later, Zach Michaelis scored a rebound goal of his own, tying the game up at one goal apiece.
Michaelis added another goal on the powerplay to give Trail the lead, but late in the period during four-on-four play, Culling fired a laser over the shoulder of goaltender Evan Fradette to tie the game at 2-2 after two.
Despite out-shooting the Smokies 15-7 in the third, both goalies held their ground in the third period, and overtime was the same story.
Michaelis and Teddy Lagerback both scored for the Smoke Eaters in the shootout, while their goalie stopped attempts from Culling and Luke Pakulak to secure the W.
The Vipers now have a record of 6-10-3-3 and sit third from the bottom in the B.C. Hockey League Interior division. Trail is now three points behind West Kelowna for fourth in the division.
After hitting the road for just the one game against Trail, the Vipers are back in action at Kal Tire Place tonight versus West Kelowna at 6 p.m.