Two goals 20 seconds apart from guys not noted for their scoring boosted the Vernon Vipers to an impressive 7-2 win over the Wenatchee Wild in Game 3 of the B.C. Hockey League’s Interior Conference final Tuesday in front of 2,065 fans at Kal Tire Place.
The Vipers lead the best-of-seven series 2-1 with Game 4 Wednesday at 7 p.m. at KTP. Game 5 is back in Wenatchee at the Town Toyota Centre Friday.
With Vernon leading 2-1 in the second period, towering defenceman Landon Fuller – who hadn’t scored all season or in the first 14 Vernon playoff games – beat Wild goalie Austin Park at 13:57. Tyler Ho – returning to the lineup after having missed the last six post-season encounters – scored on a breakaway 20 seconds later to make the score 4-1 home team. Ho had just three regular-season markers.
Third period goals from Michael Young, with a howitzer from the point for his third of the series, Teddy Wooding, on a powerplay, and Josh Latta unassisted, with a rocket over Park’s shoulder, rounded out the Vernon scoring.
Logan Cash opened the goal brigade for the Vipers at 4:39 of the first period. Ben Sanderson made it 2-0 at 4:08 of the second.
Brian Adams, with his second of the series, scored for Wenatchee at 6:33, and Blake Bargar finished the Wild scoring late in the third, at 18:14.
Aidan Porter made 26 saves for the win while Park went the distance, taking the loss with just 13 saves as Vernon managed only 20 shots.
In Victoria, the Prince George Spruce Kings advanced to their second straight Fred Page Cup championship series Tuesday.
Ben Poisson’s unassisted goal at 18:09 of overtime gave the Spruce Kings a 3-2 win over the Grizzlies, and a 4-0 league semifinal sweep.
Prince George is 12-1 in the playoffs to date.