Wenatchee, WA, USA: Connor Marritt scored once in regulation and the shootout winner as the Vernon Vipers outlasted the Wenatchee Wild on Saturday night at the Town Toyota Center.
Defense was under the spotlight in this hockey game as the undermanned Wild and the always stingy Vipers kept a methodical pace with neither team yielding too many quality opportunities let alone shots. The best chance of the first period came to Elan Barlevwise as he drove the net from the left corner, but Sandquist made the save and kept Ho away on the rebound. The Wild got on the board in the final minute of the frame as Trevor Griebel snapped home his first BCHL goal and Wenatchee took a 1-0 lead into the dressing room after 1.
The Vipers came out quickly in the second period, while it was 4 on 4 and Josh Latta clanked one off the goal post. On the same shift, Latta was able to get a puck back and set up Connor Marritt in front of the net to make it 1-1 on the shorthanded goal. The Vipers had plenty of chances in the period to take the lead as their powerplay had a full 2 minutes with a 5 on 3, but Sandquist and the Wild penalty killers were able to kill it off. It was 1-1 after 2 periods.
In the third, more defense as each team was wary to make a mistake. There weren’t many mistakes in the period with just 14 combined shots and not a whole lot of scoring chances. 60 minutes wouldn’t net a winner so overtime was required.
In overtime, puck possession dominated as both teams were cycling and moving, but again defensively the offense couldn’t get anything to goal.
In a shootout, the Vipers shot first and Jesse Lansdell was stopped by Sandquist. Christophe Tellier shot next, but a nice blocker save from Porter kept it scoreless. In the second round, Connor Marritt ripped home a low shot from the right side of the ice. Murphy Stratton was next and again Porter with the blocker kept the puck out. Matt Kowalski had the chance to end it and did with a nice deke around Sandquist to give the Vipers the extra point and a 2-1 shootout win.
Here’s the scoring summary:
WEN – Trevor Griebel (1) – Chad Sasaki (22), Blake Bargar (16) – 19:30
VER – Connor Marritt (11) – Josh Latta (19) – 0:20 (SHG)
- – Jesse Lansdell – NO GOAL
- – Christophe Fillion – NO GOAL
- – Connor Marritt – GOAL
- – Murphy Stratton – NO GOAL
- – Matt Kowalski – GOAL
The Vipers head home after a 4-1 road trip to face the Chilliwack Chiefs on Wednesday night at Kal Tire Place.
PHOTO CREDIT: Russ Alman / Digital Media Northwest