Vees rout Smoke Eaters 7-2

Penticton is up 2-0 in best-of-seven playoff series

The Trail Smoke Eaters couldn’t stay out of the penalty box Saturday night and the Penticton Vees made them pay time and time again, going 5-for-7 on the man advantage in a 7-2 win in game two of the Interior Division semifinals.

Related: Respect flowing both ways for Vees and Smoke Eaters

Owen Sillinger opened the scoring in the game as Jonny Tychonick took a long shot from the line that Adam Marcoux stopped. Sillinger was all alone in front of the net and easily corralled the rebound before sliding it past Marcoux just 3:46 into the game.

Trail answered quickly after Braeden Tuck flipped the puck from his own zone to centre and Tyler Ghirardosi found it with a step on the Vees defenceman. Ghirardosi shot from the left circle over Adam Scheel’s glove to tie the game just over a minute after the Vees scored.

Jack Barnes continued his scoring pace in the playoffs, jamming home a rebound off a Jared Nash shot for his fourth goal in six playoff games, with under four minutes remaining in the period.

With just 10 seconds remaining in the first period, the Smoke Eaters’ Andre Ghantous got called for slashing, sending the Vees to the power play to start the second. Wyatt Sloboshan sent the puck to the goal line for Taylor Ward, who passed it across the slot to Sillinger, who then fired it into the goal for his second of the night just over a minute into the second period.

Penticton Vees Jack Barnes is helped from the ice after taking a hit to the heat in the second period of Saturday’s game at the South Okanagan Events Centre. (Mark Brett/Western News)

A few minutes later, Barnes brushed Marcoux after the Trail goaltender covered the puck, which Ethan Martini took exception to, throwing haymakers at Barnes and crashing him into the end wall. Martini was subsequently ejected from the game and Barnes had to be helped off the ice and didn’t return.

On the five-minute power play, the Vees scored twice. Lukas Sillinger slid home a rebound in the crease before Jackson Keane banked the puck off Marcoux and in from below the goal line 47 seconds later to make it 5-1 Penticton through 40 minutes.

After Spencer Maclean cut the Vees’ lead to 5-2 with five minutes to go, the Smoke Eaters parade to the penalty box resumed as Maclean was called for roughing after the whistle and given a misconduct, becoming the second Trail player to be ejected from the game.

Owen Sillinger completed his hat trick after his no-look centring feed went off a Trail player and into the net, eclipsing his goal total from last season’s playoff run with his fourth of the post-season.

The Vees weren’t done. Blaine Caton was called for goalie interference with 1:25 to play, and Keane scored his second of the game, firing a wrist shot past Marcoux in the slot with just 19 seconds to play.

The Vees now head to Trail for game three Tuesday night, looking to build their game lead to 3-0 on the Smoke Eaters in the best-of-seven series.

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