Vees win second straight at RBC Cup

Image Credit: Penticton Vees via Twitter

PENTICTON - Steen Cooper picked the perfect time to get his first points of the RBC Cup. The 19-year-old forward had a goal and an assist and was named the Player of the Game, as the Penticton Vees held-off the Carleton Place Canadians 4-3 Tuesday afternoon.

Cooper setup Connor Chartier’s game-winning goal early in the third period and the Vees held off a late Canadians surge, to improve to 2-1 at the National Jr. ‘A’ tournament.

The Vees erased two one-goal deficits in the comeback win and they were down early in the first period. After the Vees were called for a penalty on the opening shift, Andy Sturtz put the Canadians up 1-0 half a minute in on a well-placed shot glove-side on Hunter Miska.

The Vees had an answer however, as Cam Amantea brought the Vees back level four and a half minutes later. Amantea went to the net and slid a rebound under Guillaume Therien after Dante Fabbro’s point-shot was stopped; Amantea’s first coming at 5:09.

Miska prevented the Canadians from going ahead shortly after, as Sturtz was stopped on a partial breakaway from the blue-line in.

Carleton Place did pull ahead midway through the first after Adam Lloyd’s shot had eyes for the back of the net. Lloyd let it go from just inside the blue-line and beat Miska upstairs at 10:04.

The Vees had answer for that goal too, as Cooper cracked the scoresheet early in the second and tied the game on the Vees’ first power-play. Mike Lee threw the puck out front and after it hit the post, Cooper smacked it in at 3:40.

Then Riley Alferd gave the Vees their first lead of the game four-minutes later. On another scramble in front of the Carleton Place net, Alferd was the last Vees to touch the puck before it slid past Therien at 7:49.

Chartier provided some insurance five-minutes into the third on a great feed from the left-wing. Cooper spun away from the defender then swung the puck back out front to Chartier for the tap-in 5:21.

Carleton Place cut into the two-goal lead just 58-seconds later and on another power-play. Stephen Baylis skated from end-to-end before beating Miska on the short-side from the left-wing at 6:19.

The Canadians pulled their goal inside the final minute but the Vees withstood the pressure and Miska sealed the win with a timely pad save on Bryce Van Horn just as time expired.

Final Score: 4-3 Vees
Shots: 29-18 Vees
Power-Plays: Vees 1-4 Carleton Place 2-5

Cooper finished with a team-high two points in the win and was named the Vees Player of the Game. Tuesday marked the first time in RBC Cup history the Vees faced the Carleton Place Canadians. Chartier is now tied with Patrick Newell for the team lead in goals with two. With the win, the Vees have assured themselves a spot in the Semi-Finals.

The Vees are off Wednesday, before playing their round-robin finale against the Soo Thunderbirds on Thursday; puck drop is 12 p.m. PST. The Vees and Thunderbirds last met in the 2012 RBC Cup, where they split their two meetings; the Vees winning 3-0 in the Semi-Final.

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