Friday, 8 January 2016

January 8th vs Merritt PREVIEW

The West Kelowna Warriors entertain the Merritt Centennials tonight at Royal Lepage Place in their final meeting this season. The Centennials have been a nemesis of the Warriors this season, winning 4 of the 6 meetings to date against 5 different Warriors netminders.

The Warriors made a big splash yesterday before Sunday's deadine, acquiring 20-year-old forwards Jake LeBrun and Bryan Basilico from the Prince George Spruce Kings in exchange for forward Tanner Campbell and Future Considerations. Fans will be stumped as to why a local, up and coming forward in Campbell was dealt, but it was a situation for GM Rylan Ferster that was necessary to get a couple experienced players for the stretch run towards the playoffs.

Campbell is a definite offensive talent who has great vision and is smart with the puck. It's a tough piece to give up for the Warriors, and the organization wishes him all the best in PG. As Rylan Ferster has said in the past, and probably will again tonight in the pre-game show, that "trades are never easy, but in the end the goal of all trades is to benefit both teams and we hope that is the case once more."

The group that the Warriors now have will be the roster that they finish the season with. There are no possible upcoming deals, as West Kelowna does not have a player card to add anyone. While one short of the roster limit, the Warriors feel they can supplement with AP's if necessary on a game to game basis.

Tonight's game will be the 2nd of 4 straight games at home, as the Warriors host Vernon Tuesday and Trail next Friday night, before a visit to the Silverbacks in Salmon Arm on Saturday the 16th.

While the Warriors cannot win the season series against Merritt, they can make it 4-3 win a win tonight. Salmon Arm visits both Wenatchee and Penticton this weekend, so the Warriors are hoping for out of town scoreboard help with 19 games remaining on the schedule.

Stats Pack:

Merritt – 13-24-0-3

HOME – 7-10-0-3
ROAD – 6-14-0-0

Top Scorers
Colin Grannary (23 G, 27 A)
Gavin Gould (22 G, 27 A)
Nick Jermain (17 G, 18 A)

GF – 137
GA – 174

PP – 10th – 37 for 199 (18.6%)
PK – 17th – 130 for 191 (68.1%)

West Kelowna – 23-14-0-2

HOME – 13-6-0-1
ROAD – 10-8-0-1

Top Scorers
Liam Blackburn (21 G, 29 A)
Jonathan Desbiens (24 G, 18 A)
Kylar Hope (18 G, 24 A)

GF - 151
GA – 134

PP – 3rd – 45 for 184 (24.5%)
PK – 8th – 163 for 200 (81.5%)

Next Game – Tuesday January 12th
vs. VERNON – 7 PM Royal Lepage Place
Head-to-Head Lifetime – West Kelowna is 44-17-1-4 vs. Merritt All-Time
Warriors are 24-7-1-1 All-Time vs. the Centennials at Home

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