Vernon, BC: Reagan Milburn had a pair of powerplay goals and Roan Clark stopped 28 of 29 as the Vernon Vipers defeated the West Kelowna Warriors by a 4-1 score to cap off the preseason schedule.
As it was a night ago, the first period was penalty filled. However, it was West Kelowna who took 4 minor penalties in the opening 20. The Vipers struck early as Reagan Milburn rifled home a shot from the left circle, just inside the post making it 1-0. They would increase their lead a few minutes later as a scramble in front of the Warriors goal led to Zack Tonelli pouncing on a loose puck and snapping home his first of the preseason. Tyson Jugnauth got West K back in the game with a powerplay marker and it was 2-1 after 1.
A pretty even second period saw some chances both ways. Defensively, the Vipers were hemmed in their own zone, but were able to get big saves when they needed them and some key shot blocks. The hockey gods were smiling on the Vipers later in the period as a would be harmless play along the glass kicked out to the front of the net where Luke Buss was conveniently waiting. A nice deke later and the Vipers had a 3-1 lead. Another powerplay and another goal from Reagan Milburn as his cross ice pass was disrupted by the Warrior defender, but it trickled just across the line giving the Vipers a 4-1 lead after 2.
A really strong defensive effort was on full display in the third. The Vipers didn't allow much in the way of opportunities and their forecheck was stellar, slowing up the very talented Warrior defenders. In the end the horn sounded giving the Vipers the victory.
The Vipers will kick off the regular season on Friday night as they travel to Penticton to take on the Vees.