Big BCHL win Tuesday for West Kelowna who blank Merritt 2-0

Rookie netminder does the job in posting shutout as race for the playoffs heats up in West Kelowna

Stephen Heslop might not have known where he would play to start the season, but the West Kelowna Warriors are happy he was in their net Tuesday night in an important win for the BCHL club.

Heslop made his 3rd career BCHL start and 2nd this season for the Warriors Tuesday night against Vernon, and came away with a 34 save shutout in a 2-0 win.

“I didn’t know if I’d have an opportunity to play Junior A this year at all, so this one obviously means a lot to me,” he said after the game, “I’m so thankful to Bill (Princeton Posse coach Rotheisler) and Rylan (Warriors coach Ferster) for the opportunity to help out this team lately.”

The win and shutout were both firsts in the BCHL for the 19 year old Heslop.

Rylan Ferster was pleased with the Warriors compete level, as they were without Andy Desautels, Kristian Blumenschein, and Jordan Masters due to the flu.

“It was good for our guys to be in a game like tonight, they’re like playoff games now and this is what a playoff game would be like.”

Tuesday’s game was scoreless through 40 minutes as both goalies played well.

The Warriors got on the board thanks to Liam Blackburn on a 3rd period 5 on 3 power-play, the Warriors 3rd such advantage of the game. Then with just over 4 minutes remaining, Mac Ferner hammered home a point shot under the crossbar for a 2-0 lead that the Warriors would hold on to.

The win moved the Warriors into sole possession of third place in the BCHL Interior, two points ahead of Merritt and four clear of fifth place Salmon Arm.

West Kelowna will play in Salmon Arm on Friday night. Only the top four teams in the Interior make the playoffs.

Kelowna Capital News