SALMON ARM SILVERBACKS
Liam Hansson and Noah Quinn both scored in the shootout, as the Cranbrook Bucks defeated the Salmon Arm Silverbacks 6-5 to split a weekend B.C. Hockey League doubleheader in the East Kootenays.
The Silverbacks offence got off to an unbelievable start. The top line found the scoresheet just 45 seconds into the game when Noah Serdachny and Simon Tassy did some excellent work below the goal line to force a turnover, and Matt Bourgault was left wide open in front of the crease and put a backhand home for his seventh goal of the campaign.
The Silverbacks found the back of the net again at the midway point of the frame when Serdachny forced a turnover behind the net, and Tassy directed it into the net with his knee giving the Silverbacks a 2-0 lead.
Salmon Arm thought they had a 3-0 lead when Bourgault batted down a puck into the net, but the referee waved it off due to a high stick. Although the goal was disallowed the Bucks yanked goaltender Evan Gartner from the game. He allowed two goals on six shots.
With the Backs on a powerplay in the late stanza of the period, the Bucks capitalized on a shorthanded opportunity. Jarred Smith beat Owen Say blocker side to cut the lead to 2-1. The Bucks outshot the Silverbacks 10-8 in the middle frame.
There were four goals combined in the second period, two from each side.
First, Serdachny tipped home a William Lavigne point shot for his 20th season, giving the Backs a 3-1 lead. Cranbrook would answer shortly after, as Tucker Hartmann turned the puck over in his own zone, and Johnny Johnson stripped him and beat Say glove side to cut the lead in half.
The Bucks added another 1:11 later when Bauer Morrissey walked right into the slot, snapped home the tying goal, and sent the home crowd into a frenzy.
However, with the Silverbacks on the powerplay they would get the lead right back. Serdachny swatted home his second of the night past Nathan Airey to restore the lead for Salmon Arm. Tassy and Daniel Panetta picked up the assists. The Silverbacks were outshot 12-8 in the middle frame.
In the third period, with the Silverbacks ahead a goal, it didn’t start the way they wanted. Just :59 seconds in, Kellan Hjartarson stripped Panetta off the puck, and quickly snapped it on goal and beat Say under the blocker to tie the game at four.
The Silverbacks immediately responded. Nathan Morin picked the top corner near the goal line to give the Backs the lead again. It was his fifth of the season. The rest of the period was back and forth action, and the Backs held the lead up until 1:27 left in the game. Tyson Dyck tied the game with a shot from the top of the circle through traffic with the goalie on the bench, meaning for the fourth time this season the Backs were heading to overtime.
In overtime, there was one Grade-A chance for each side.
Noah Quinn danced into the offensive zone and got a good opportunity on Say, but he stood tall to deny him. Then Jake Lammens led a 3-on-1 rush in that same sequence, but Airey foiled him keeping it tied. The rest of overtime solved nothing.
Liam Hansson was the first penalty shot contestant, and he beat Say glove side. Serdachny, Jarred Smith, and Tassy all missed, meaning Noah Quinn had a chance to end it. He came down the right side and beat Say blocker side with a deke to the backhand, giving the Bucks a 6-5 Shootout win.
Salmon Arm picked up three of a possible four points during the trip and will be back in action Wednesday at home against the Penticton Vees, who trail the Interior Conference-leading Silverbacks by three points.
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