Friday, 17 October 2014

October 17th PREVIEW: Warriors vs. Cents

The West Kelowna Warriors will take their 3-1 road record into the smaller confines of the Nicola Valley Memorial Arena tonight to take on the struggling Centennials. After starting off the season 5-1, the Cents have dropped their last 3 games, including blowouts to Chilliwack and Salmon Arm.

The Warriors will look to bounce back from a pair of losses to the Penticton Vees when they hit the ice tonight, as the ever-tight Interior Division sees 4 teams tied in 3rd spot with 10 points.

Top Scorer Liam Blackburn will look to make his way back onto the score sheet, after being held off of it on Saturday against Penticton (as were the rest of his teammates), snapping an 8 game point streak.

Michael Buonincontri returned to the West Kelowna line-up in that home date with the Vees, and the hope is that Greydon Robinson and Kade Kehoe are close to a return as well. With the smaller ice surface in Merritt expect the physical play to pick up as well.

UPDATE: The Warriors have added 20-year-old forward Andrew Johnson to the team following the WHL deadline for determining their 3 overage players for the season. Johnson comes to the team after 260+ games in Major Junior for Swift Current, Seattle, and Moose Jaw. He had 44 goals and 58 assists over 4 full seasons.

Game Notes:

Merritt – 5-4-0-0

T-3rd in Interior Division (10 Pts)

HOME – 3-1-0-0 
ROAD – 2-3-0-0 

Top Scorer – Gavin Gould (2 G, 6 A)

GF – 26
GA – 25

PP – 7th – 23.8% (10 for 42)
PK – 4th – 82.2% (37 for 45)
West Kelowna – 5-4-0-0

T-3rd in Interior Division (10 Pts)

HOME – 2-3-0-0
ROAD – 3-1-0-0

Top Scorer – Liam Blackburn (6 G, 11 A)

GF – 33
GA – 30

PP – 6th – 24.5% (13 for 53)
PK – 3rd – 82.6% (38 for 46)

Next Game – Oct 18th vs Vernon – 7:00 PM – Royal Lepage Place
Head-to-Head Lifetime – West Kelowna leads 40-12-1-1
2013/2014 Head to Head – West Kelowna wins 7-0-0-1

This Season Head to Head
October 4th – Merritt defeats West Kelowna 2-1
-      A late 2nd period goal shorthanded from Jake Clifford was the back-breaking goal against the Warriors with less than 1 second left on the clock. Anthony Pupplo stopped all 9 shots he faced in the 3rd period to hold on for the victory. Jonathan Desbiens had the lone goal for the Warriors, on the power-play in the 1st.

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