The undermanned Westside Warriors saw their BCHL losing streak hit five games with a 2-1 loss to the hometown Vernon Vipers on Tuesday night.
With Richard Vanderhoek, Max French, Travis Blanleil, Connor Dempsey and Seb Lloyd all out with injury and Shawn Hochhausen serving a two-game suspension, Westside played solid defensive hockey but struggled to find offence.
The Warriors lone marker came with their net empty and just 53 seconds remaining when Tyler Krause scored his team-leading 10th goal of the season.
“We definitely had the work ethic tonight, but didn’t get the bounces,” said third star and Warriors D-man Michael King. “We had a bunch of APs in the lineup, but that’s no excuse because they played great. We’ve got a lot of injuries we’re working through right now, and we’re frustrated. We just need some lucky bounces here and there.”
The Warriors outshot Vernon 30-26 in the game, including 15-5 in the final period. Steve Racine was tagged with the loss, while Kirby Halcrow earned the second star in his winning performance.
As for the club’s current losing skid, head coach Rylan Ferster said the Warriors aren’t getting the breaks they need. Case in point was Sunday’s game aganist Trail when the Warriors missed a late breakaway for the win, then lost in OT.
“Very rarely do we give up more than 30 shots a night,” said Ferster. “We just can’t plain out score and we have a lot of offence out. Again, tonight, we didn’t have some other guys step up like they should have, in a game that I guess could have gone either way. I thought our defence was outstanding tonight, as a group and our goalie gave us a chance to win. Great teams win those games 2-1 and we’re still trying to become that.”
Westside returns to action on Friday night in Salmon Arm before hosting Penticton on Saturday.