Vipers’ Colby Feist (white) wrestles Grizzlies’ Nico Somerville for the puck in Friday night’s 5-2 win. (Photo: Vernon Vipers)

Vipers find offence in win versus Victoria Grizzlies

The Vipers beat the Grizzlies on the road 5-2 on Friday night.

After being shut out by the Nanaimo Clippers on Sunday, the Vipers hoped to find their scoring against a Victoria Grizzlies team that’s given up the second-most goals in the BCHL this year.

The visiting Vipers did just that on Friday night, scoring two powerplay goals en route to a 5-2 win.

The snakes were buzzing to start the first period and made good on their first powerplay opportunity eight minutes into the game. Dawson Holt connected a pass to Connor Marritt in the left circle, and the left-winger who’s tied for the team lead in scoring made no mistake.

Three-and-a-half minutes later Ben Helgeson set up Colby Feist, who scored his first BCHL goal to make it 2-0 Vipers.

The Grizzlies showed some push-back, garnering a few scoring chances of their own. But goaltender Reilly Herbst was up to the task and the Vipers’ defense stood tall.

Late in the first period the Vipers added their second powerplay tally off the stick of Matt Kowalski to increase the lead to 3-0.

The Grizzlies got some life in the second frame with an unassisted goal by Nico Somerville, and got back into the game with a goal by Trevor Bishop less than two minutes later. With the lead cut to one the game tightened up for a stretch, with neither team able to find the back of the net.

The Vipers pulled away in the third thanks to a brilliant shift from Brett Fudger, who blocked a shot and turned the puck the other way for a Vipers counter-attack. Moving into the offensive zone he finessed a pass to Connor Sleeth, who snapped it home to regain the two-goal lead.

The Vipers held the Grizzlies to just six shots in the third period. Dawson Holt buried a goal off a slick two-on-one feed from Connor Marritt for a final score of 5-2.

The game got a tad chippy in the final minutes, and Vipers’ defenceman Landon Fuller ended up dropping the gloves against Victoria’s Chace Oliver, who instigated the fight after a pair of big hits by Fuller.

The Vipers will head from Victoria to Cowichan for a match-up against the Capitals on Saturday night.

READ MORE: Maple Ridge coach behind ‘The Michigan’ reflects on lacrosse-style goal’s debut in the NHL

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Brendan Shykora
Reporter, Vernon Morning Star
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