The Vernon Vipers’ Mike Iovanna (right) clears a loose puck while TJ Dumonceaux attempts to clear the Salmon Arm SilverBacks’ Colton Thibault from netminder Gunnar Neilson’s doorstep in B.C. Hockey League exhibition play Friday night at the Shaw Centre.

Vernon Vipers bow to Salmon Arm SilverBacks in exhibition opener

Salmon Arm SilverBacks bounce Vernon Vipers 5-1 in B.C. Hockey League exhibition play Friday night at the Shaw Centre.

Evan Anderson pocketed a pair of goals as the host Salmon Arm SilverBacks bounced the Vernon Vipers 5-1 in B.C. Hockey League exhibition play Friday night at the Shaw Centre.

The ‘Backs, who fell 2-1 to the host Merritt Centennials a night earlier, scored in the opening minute. Vernon’s Craig Martin replied for the Snakes shortly after on a one-timer from the slot, assisted by fellow Kootenay product Dallas Calvin.

“Marty (Martin) was terrific,” said Vipers’ head coach Jason Williamson, who dressed only a handful of veterans for the game. “He skated well and had several good scoring chances.”

Williamson went with a young goalie tandem, with Gunnar Neilson and Harrison Whitlock sharing crease duties. Incumbents Austin Smith and Danny Todosychuk both sat out with minor injuries, and were also likely to miss Saturday night’s rematch at Kal Tire Place.

Scoring for the SilverBacks were Evan Anderson, with a pair, Thomas Plese, Jeff Kennedy and Josh Bowes.

Aside from some soft goals, Williamson was pleased with Vernon’s defensive game as the Vipers outshot Salmon Arm 28-20.

“There’s some things that we’ll have to shore up, but overall the effort was there,” he said.

Williamson made two more cuts following Friday’s game – forwards Matt Hill and Kai Cathers – leaving him with 17 forwards, nine dee and four goalies.

The Vipers will meet the Prince George Spruce Kings for a Wednesday-nighter in 100 Mile House, and will conclude the preseason with a home-and-home series with the West Kelowna Warriors starting Friday (7 p.m.) in Vernon.

After one full year at the helm of the SilverBacks, head coach/GM Troy Mick has a much better understanding of what his team can do.

“We have a lot better idea of what are roster is and where we’re coming from,” said Mick, who has had two stints as head coach with the Vipers.

“We were always OK with our size, but this year we’re faster and more skilled. Last year, we had to grind out wins.

“The culture has officially changed in Salmon Arm.”

Vernon minor hockey products Harlan Orr, Alex Gillies, Alex Jewell and Colton Thibault are all with the SilverBacks.

 

Just Posted

Vernon bylaw officer best in B.C.

Al Harrison named Bylaw Officer of the Year at annual association conference

Vernon council waits on fence as report prepared

Council to get information on cost of erecting fence for off-leash dog area at Marshall Field

Vernon Transit enjoys stellar year

Ridership up over tier average, says BC Transit representative

Biker airlifted from Vernon mountain resort

22-year-old injured at SilverStar Mountain Resort

Inaugural KidSport Greater Vernon golf tourney raises $18,000

Event raises single largest fundraising amount for Greater Vernon KidSport

Video shows fireworks shot at swan in Alberta

Alberta Fish and Wildlife is investigating the incident in Grande Prairie

Man accused of assault at South Okanagan beach gets bail

Thomas Brayden Kruger-Allen was granted bail at the Penticton provincial courthouse on Monday

‘Text neck’ causing bone spurs to grow from millennials’ skulls, researchers say

Technology use from early childhood causing abnormal bone growths in 41 per cent of young adults

B.C. teen killed by fallen tree on field trip remembered as hero

13-year-old Tai Caverhill was the first to spot the tree falling and warned his friends

Surrey RCMP raises Pride flag amid din of protesters

There were about 30 protesters on either side, and 20 Mounties doing crowd control

Should B.C. get rid of Daylight Saving Time?

The province wants to know, as state governments down south make the move

Air Canada reviewing how crew left sleeping passenger on parked plane

In a Facebook post, the woman said she woke up ‘all alone’ on a ‘cold dark’ aircraft

Canadians crash out of Women’s World Cup in 0-1 loss to Sweden

Canada missed a chance to tie the game on a penalty shot

Four-year-old boy assaulted at B.C. soccer game

It happened at a weekend tournament in Ashcroft

Most Read