Trail, BC: The Vernon Vipers used a 5 goal third period to rally from a one goal deficit and defeat the Trail Smoke Eaters 6-3 on Friday night.
The Vipers jumped out to a quick shot advantage with 3 shots in the first 33 seconds. They continued to press early in the period and it resulted in the first goal of the game as Logan Cash walked off the wall and backhanded a shot under the bar to make it 1-0. The Smoke Eaters drew even at the tail end of a powerplay as Kent Johnson made it 1-1.
In the second, the start was good, but the Vipers couldn’t find the back of the net. Special teams were put front and center in the period, with the Vipers having 2 powerplays and the Smokies having 3. Both PK’s were solid, but the momentum shifted due to those powerplays. The only goal of the period came to the Smokies as Mack Byers snapped home a shot from the left circle to make it 2-1 Trail after 2.
A wild third period saw plenty of offense. The Vipers killed off the remainder of a penalty and the Vipers drew even on the next shift as Connor Marritt won the race to the front of the net and tap home a pass from Josh Latta to make it 2-2. Lane Zablocki made it 3-2 moments later on a rebound in front of the Trail goal. Mack Byers tied it up at 3 after being set up by Bryce Anderson. The Vipers retook the lead in the final five minutes of the period as Jesse Lansdell tapped home a Lane Zablocki shot to make it 4-3. Josh Latta made it 5-3 on a breakaway before Connor Marritt sealed it into an empty net to make it 6-3 the final.
Here’s the scoring summary:
VER – Logan Cash (4) – Coleton Bilodeau (10), Nick Cherkowski (9) – 3:05
TRA – Kent Johnson (17) – Carter Jones (31), Trevor Zins (28) – 6:26 – PPG
TRA – Mack Byers (12) – Tyler Ghirardosi (18) – 14:39
VER – Connor Marritt (9) – Josh Latta (17), Matt Kowalski (23) – 0:45
VER – Lane Zablocki (4) – Jesse Lansdell (10), Ben Sanderson (5) – 4:32
TRA – Mack Byers (13) – Max Kryski (6), Bryce Anderson (7) – 10:34
VER – Jesse Lansdell (9) – Ben Sanderson (6), Lane Zablocki (3) – 15:19
VER – Josh Latta (19) – Landon Fuller (4) – 18:06
VER – Connor Marritt (10) – Josh Latta (18), Lane Zablocki (4) – 18:38 (EN)
The Vipers will wrap up their long road trip on Saturday night when they take on the Wenatchee Wild