Spruce Kings surge past Vernon Vipers in third period

The Vernon Vipers fell 3-0 to the host Spruce Kings in B.C. Hockey League play Friday night at the Coliseum.

The overnight bus ride from Prince George is difficult at the best of times. For the Vernon Vipers, it was downright miserable after they fell 3-0 to the host Spruce Kings in B.C. Hockey League play Friday night at the Coliseum.

With the game scoreless going into the third period, the Sprucies torched netminder Danny Todosychuk (31 saves) for three goals in just over seven minutes to break the game wide open.

Mitch Eden opened the scoring with a rebound off the rush at 4:14. Christian Weidauer squeezed a point shot through traffic for the 2-0 goal, and Jeremiah Luedke surprised Todosychuk after Vernon defenceman Michael Statchuk tried to ring the puck around the boards, only to have it bounce out front, right to Luedke.

Vernon head coach Jason Williamson called it a lacklustre effort.

“I’m tremendously disappointed in our group right now,” said Williamson. “Our best players need to be our hardest-working players, and they weren’t.

“We were soft, we didn’t finish checks and we let them dictate the game.”

Todosychuk had to be sharp early as Vernon was outshot 9-2 in the first period, and 34-20 overall.

If there was one bright spot for Vernon Friday night, it was the penalty kill, which held Prince George scoreless on five attempts, including a major to d-man Mark Hamilton after he boarded a Spruce King player in the third period.

Williamson said Hamilton, who also earned a misconduct for a blow to the head in the second period, will likely be suspended the next two games.

Williamson noted the energy brought by new centre Josh Betinol, who he picked up Thursday from the SJHL Battlefords North Stars. He said Betinol’s line of Matty Saharchuk and Tyler Povolfskie was Vernon’s best on the night.

Prince George (6-3-0-1) has now won four straight to sit atop the Mainland Division. The Vipers occupy the Interior cellar at 3-4-1-2. They headed right back on the road Saturday to face the Salmon Arm SilverBacks (5-4-0-1).

Troy Mick’s ‘Backs opened their October schedule with a 5-2 win over the Penticton Vees Friday night.

Vernon’s Alex Gillies led the Gorillas with a 2+1, first-star performance. The 18-year-old leads the league with 11-5-16 in 10 games.


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Family key to 60 years of marriage for Vernon couple

Syd and Emily Smith were married July 16, 1960, at the young ages of 18 and 19

Fundraiser kick-started for Vernon woman battling tongue cancer

Woman’s four-year-old twins are the driving force behind her fight

Lake Country beachgoers reminded to maintain distance amid COVID-19

Signage, park rangers, park patrol students in place to monitor busy beaches in Central Okanagan

Comet caught in Lumby skies by local photographer

Dale Eurich Photography snapped the rare sighting in the early hours Tuesday morning

Phone scammers claim to be Vernon Mounties: RCMP

Cold callers claiming to be police seeking payments in gift cards and Bitcoin

Recent surge in COVID-19 cases not unexpected amid Phase Three of reopening: B.C.’s top doc

Keep circles small, wear masks and be aware of symptoms, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

‘Resistance’ from Interior Health puts races in Penticton on hold

It’s unknown if races planned for this weekend at the Penticton Speedway will take place

B.C. NDP changing WorkSafeBC regulations to respond to COVID-19

Employers say reclassifying coronavirus could be ‘ruinous’

Oliver Town Hall reopens to public as COVID-19 test comes back negative

Town Hall was closed briefly as a staff member showed multiple COVID-19 symptoms

RCMP to investigate hate-motivated vandalism in Summerland

Swastikas and other graffiti spray painted on house and at bandshell

Statistical flaws led to B.C. wolf cull which didn’t save endangered caribou as estimated

Study finds statistical flaws in an influential 2019 report supporting a wolf cull

Baby raccoon rescued from 10-foot deep drainage pipe on Vancouver Island

‘Its cries were loud, pitiful and heartbreaking,’ Saanich animal control officer says

Vancouver Island RCMP respond to reports of man masturbating on bus

52-year-old man charged with committing an indecent act in a public place

B.C. man who went by ‘Doctor Ray Gaglardi’ charged with sex assault of teenage boys

The man, 75, is accused of assaulting teenage boys he met through Coquitlam-area churches

Most Read