Kelowna Chiefs lose 3-1 to Summerland Steam

KELOWNA  - It was a hard fought battle for Rutland’s very own Kelowna Chiefs as they fought the Summerland Steam for possession of first place in the Okanagan Division.

In the end, the Chiefs suffered a 3-1 loss in their final home game of the regular season.

Summerland netted their first goal less than two minutes into the match-up on a power play.  Kelowna’s Ryan Baim was quickly handed a boarding penalty and Michael Winnitoy took advantage, scoring at 18:33 while Jordan Boultbee and Rylan Sideroff assisted.

There was no scoring in the second period and the Chiefs entered the final 20 minutes of the game down 1-0.

In the third, Summerland’s Braden Saretsky scored off a pass from Shane Bennett to extend the lead at 16:46.  Kelowna didn’t give up though, as Captain Jordan Salahor fought his way to the front of the Steam’s net and got Kelowna on the board at 15:48.  Cole De Jonge had the assist in that goal.

Kelowna kept fighting the entire game but it just wasn’t enough and the Steam scored the game winner on the empty net with 14 seconds remaining in the period for a 3-1 victory.

Chiefs starting goaltender Tyler O’Donnell kept the team in the game, facing 35 shots on goal compared to just 19 against the Steam.

The loss keeps the Kelowna Chiefs in second place of the Okanagan Division of the KIJHL with 65 points on the season while Summerland squeezes into first place with 68 points.

The regular season still isn’t over for Kelowna as they wrap things up on Saturday, February 22nd on the road against the North Okanagan Knights.  Win or lose, Kelowna will face Osoyoos in the first round of the playoffs.  That series kicks off at Rutland Arena on Tuesday February 25th for game one with a 7PM puck drop.


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