Sports

Warriors battle Vees twice before Xmas

West Kelowna Warriors forward Matt Anholt (left) checks Michael McNicholas of the Vernon Vipers in BCHL action Tuesday Kal Tire Place in Vernon.  - Lisa VanderVelde/Black Press
West Kelowna Warriors forward Matt Anholt (left) checks Michael McNicholas of the Vernon Vipers in BCHL action Tuesday Kal Tire Place in Vernon.
— image credit: Lisa VanderVelde/Black Press

It's only December, but the West Kelowna Warriors regard this weekend's BCHL home-and-home set with the Penticton Vees as a key point in the season.

The Okanagan rivals will face off Friday in Penticton, then again Saturday night at Royal LePage Place in West Kelowna.

The Vees (24-7-1-3) lead the Interior Division with 52 points, while the Warriors (18-12-1-2) share fourth spot with Merritt, 13 points back of Penticton.

The Warriors have beaten the Vees just once in the last three regular seasons, and are 0-for-3 against Penticton this season.

“It’s huge,” Warriors forward Tyson Dallman said of the weekend series. “I think we need to win both of those games.”

West Kelowna is coming off a 3-1 loss to the Vernon Vipers Tuesday night at Kal Tire Place, ending the Warriors three-game winning streak.

The Vipers scored in the second and third periods for a 2-0 lead, then added an empty netter in the final minute to put the game out of reach.

Jason Cotton ended Austin Smith's shutout bid with 21 seconds on the power play with his 16th goal of the season to round out the scoring.

The Warriors first action following Christmas in Monday, Dec. 30 in Trail.

Their first home game of the New Year is Jan. 4 against the Smoke Eaters.

 

 

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