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Spruce Kings struggle in Vernon

Vicki Brown photo

VERNON – This was the Spruce Kings eighth away game out of 12 games total this season, and it didn’t end with the outcome they were hoping for. The Vernon Vipers’ would strike early and often at home.

The scrappy game led to the Vipers’ third consecutive win, coming out on top 8-0.

The first period, despite the Vipers’ two goals, seemed like it would be an even match-up. Vernons Jiri Duda (‘05) opened the scoring with a sharp-angled goal, his first goal of the season. Two penalties split between the two teams followed shortly. Owen Kim (‘04) headed to the box for hooking and was soon after accompanied by Owen Goodbrand (‘04), creating some four-on-four action. Anthony Cliche (‘03) took a shot from the blue line in the dying minutes of the powerplay, sneaking it past the blocker of Ryan Sanborn (‘05), putting the second goal on the board. But, two goals were enough for Spruce Kings Head Coach, Alex Evin, pulling Sandorn for Marcus Ouellet (‘04) for the remaining 8:31 of the period and beyond.

In the first 12 seconds of the second period, the Spruce Kings and Vipers received penalties and led the game into similar four-on-four action as the first. The only damage was done by Anthony Cliche, scoring his second of the night with an assist from Isaac Tremblay (‘04). 

Vernons’ penalty kill served them well as Owen Kim, who received BCHL’s first star of the week, got a breakaway opportunity and used it wisely, putting the puck over Ouellet’s shoulder making it 4-0. That score was short-lived as Shae Busch (‘07) and Nick Mikan (‘04) both hit the back of the net within two minutes of each other giving the Vipers a six-point lead after 40. 

The final frame of the game came with plenty of penalties, 24 minutes of box time was served between the two teams. Among the calls were two misconducts. Both Skogen Schrott (‘05) and Alexis Cournoyer (‘03) were called for roughing and given game misconduct. Vernon would score twice in the third period. 8-0, the final score, the Spruce Kings fall to 3-6-3-0 this season. 

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