September 28, 2014 - 10:22 AM
MERRITT - The Penticton Vees suffered their first loss of the regular season on Saturday night, as the Merritt Centennials blanked the visitors 5-0 in their home opener at Nicola Valley Arena.
Michael Ederer scored twice and finished with three points and Jonah Imoo stopped all thirty-seven shots he faced, as the Cents’ moved into a four-way tie for first in the Interior Division.
Ederer opened the scoring late in the first period, as he capitalized on an odd-man rush. Sam Johnson moved down the right-wing before dishing the puck over to Ederer at the far-post for the tap-in at 14:01.
Just under two-minutes later Daniel Nachbaur doubled the Cents’ lead after Hunter Miska mishandled the puck in his crease. Miska bobbled an innocent looking shot that fell right to Nachbaur who poked it in at 15:58.
The Vees seemed to find their footing early in the second period, as they turned up the pressure on Imoo but that was short lived. The Cents’ added to their lead after a miscue in the neutral zone by a Vees defender created a two-on-one rush. Gavin Gould found James Neil in the middle between the circles with a centering feed and Neil forced his shot past a sprawling Miska at 6:02.
Merritt found the back of the net again in the opening moments of the third. After a power-play carried over from the second period, Ederer sniped his second of the game over Miska’s shoulder from the right-circle and just fifty-nine seconds into the frame.
John Schiavo put the finishing touches on the Cents’ home opening win with a late marker in the third. Schiavo swatted a bouncing puck up and over Brendan Barry at 15:44; Barry came into the game after Merritt’s fourth goal.
Final Score: 5-0 Centennials
Shots: 37-25 Vees
Power-Plays: Vees 0-4 Centennials 1-5
Three Stars: 1) Jonah Imoo 2) Michael Ederer 3) Shane Poulsen
The Vees, Cents’, West Kelowna Warriors and Salmon Arm Silverbacks all sport 3-1-0 records and are tied for top spot in the Interior Division. The Vees and Cents’ meet again in Penticton on Wednesday, October 8th. The Vees are not back in Merritt until November 22nd.
The attention now shifts to the Vees home opener next Friday, October 3rd when they face-off against the Salmon Arm Silverbacks. Fans can get their tickets at the Valley First Box Office (at the SOEC) or online at valleyfirsttix.com. Remember, prices for adult and senior tickets will go up one dollar on game day.
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014