Surrey, BC: Dawson Holt scored the only goal and Reilly Herbst was perfect in the shootout as the Vernon Vipers topped the Surrey Eagles by a 3-2 score.
Both teams were playing their third game in 2 and a half days and it showed early on as neither team was able to get any traction. Both teams missed passes that would normally connect and looked like they were trying to generate momentum in anyway possible. In a game like that, simplicity is key and the Vipers executed that to a tee as Landon Fuller placed a shot at the net which deflected en route and by Thomas Scarfone to make it 1-0. The Eagles implemented the same plan late in a period as Brandon Santa Juana centered a puck from the red line off a body and through Reilly Herbst to make it 1-1 after 1.
The Vipers found their legs in the second period they upped the tempo and funneled pucks to the net. More importantly they minimized Surrey’s chances. The Vipers faced adversity when they had to kill off a five minute major penalty. Dawson Holt had the best chance while shorthanded but was stopped by the shoulder of Scarfone. The Eagles would get just one shot on the man advantage. Moments after it expired, the Vipers would earn a powerplay and Connor Marritt would rip home his 9th of the season to make it 2-1. That score would hold up after 2 periods.
In the third, the Eagles came out flying and evened the game up as Cristophe Tellier finished off a 3 on 2 rush to make it 2-2 early on. Both teams traded chances as the mental and physical fatigue started to set in. Both teams were fortunate their goaltenders were locked in and this game was destined for overtime.
Not a lot going on in the extra period. Each team generated one shot, neither of which were overly dangerous and it was shootout time.
In the shootout Wyatt Schlaht was stopped by Herbst. Cam MacDonald would go next, nearly deked out Scarfone, but hit the side of the net. Cristophe Tellier was up for the Eagles, but was stopped. Connor Marritt shot second for the Vipers with his patented move, but narrowly missed the net. Holden Katzalay shot third for Surrey, tried the five hole, but Herbst said no. With a chance to win the game, Dawson Holt was next and ripped home the game winner to the glove side of Scarfone to give the Vipers the extra point and a 3-2 shootout win.
So far on the road trip, the Vipers have taken 9 of 12 points and will head home and prepare for a weekend visit to Trail next week.
You can catch all the action Friday and Saturday from Trail on 107.5 Beach Radio, Vernon Matters and HockeyTV