Defenceman Rylan Yaremko and the West Kelowna Warriors are on a three-game BCHL winning streak.

Positive start to 2016 for Warriors

West Kelowna earns weekend sweep, pushes BCHL win streak to three

If only the remainder of 2016 progressed exactly the way it began for the West Kelowna Warriors, Rylan Ferster would be the happiest coach on the planet.

The Warriors opened the new year with back-to-back victories and are now riding a three-game BCHL winning streak.

“The feeling of winning never changes,” said Ferster, the Warriors’ head coach and GM. “It feels nice when you win, and it feels crappy when you lose.

“We’re happy with the way it’s been going the last few games, so we’ll see if we can keep it going.”

West Kelowna will look to make it four straight victories on Friday night when they host the Merritt Centennials. Face off at Royal LePage is 7 p.m.

On Saturday, West Kelowna rid itself of a season-long burden by beating the Cents 4-3 in double overtime on Liam Blackburn’s penalty shot goal.

It was the first time in five tries West Kelowna had beaten Merritt this season.

“Merritt’s one of those teams we’ve had our troubles with,” Ferster said. “It was nice to finally get one from them.”

Then on Sunday afternoon at home, the Warriors took care of business with a 7-2 victory over the Surrey Eagles. Garrett Forster scored twice as West Kelowna picked up four points in a span of 18 hours.

Along with some solid special teams play, Ferster said the Warriors’ recent success is also due to some long sought-after consistency between the pipes.

After experimenting with no fewer than a half dozen netminders since the start of the season, West Kelowna has found some stability in the play of Matthew Greenfield and Keelan Williams.

Greenfield—acquired last month from the Tri City Storm of the USHL—has been especially effective with a 3-1-0-0 record, a 1.69 goals against average and .954 save percentage.

“He’s been really good,” Ferster said of Greenfield, a native of Parkland, Fla. “The numbers don’t lie. It’s no secret we were trying to stabilize that position, and with the guys we have now, we feel like we have two goalies who can do the job for us.”

After Friday’s home game with Merritt, the Warriors are off until next Tuesday when they play host to the Vernon Vipers.

The Warriors (23-14-2-0) are tied for second in the Interior Division with the Salmon Arm Silverbacks.