The Vernon Vipers scored three times in the second period Friday to build a two-goal lead and limited their opponents to just 10 shots over the final two frames as they held on for a 3-1 win over the Wenatchee Wild in Game 5 of the Interior Division Finals to advance to the league championship series.
Vipers goalie Aidan Porter was busy in the first period, making 15 saves as only Marko Reifenberger was able to beat him and the Wild led 1-0 at intermission. Vernon came out flying in the second frame with Jack Judson scoring 3:50 in and Ben Sanderson netting his fifth of the playoffs shortly after to give their team the lead. Vipers captain Jagger Williamson wristed a shot into the top corner with 1:30 to go in the period as Vernon took a 3-1 lead into the third. Porter shut the door in the third to finish with 25 saves, and his team only gave up six shots the entire period as they held on for the series win.
Judson added an assist to his second-period goal and was named the first star of the game, while Jesse Lansdell chipped in with a pair of helpers to give him 16 points in 17 playoff games to tie him for the Vipers lead.
Austin Park made 18 saves in a losing effort for Wenatchee, whose loss means there will be a new BCHL champion.
The series gets underway on Friday April 12 and Saturday April 13 at the Rolling Mix Concrete Arena in Prince George.
By virtue of the best overall record remaining in the BCHL Playoffs, the Spruce Kings will have home ice in this Championship series.
Tickets will go on sale Monday April 8 at 10 a.m., with office hours running from 10 AM to 4 PM throughout the week. Tickets are also available online at www.sprucekings.bc.ca.
Ticket Prices for the BCHL Fred Page Cup Finals will be $15 for Adults, $12 for Seniors (55+), and $10 for Youth (6-18). Children under 5 are free.