The Silverbacks (3-2-0-2) travel to the Nicola Valley today as they will meet the Merritt Centennials (5-3-0-0) tonight for the second time in this regular season. The Cents spoiled the Backs’ home opener on September 26 at the Shaw Centre with a 5-2 victory. The visitors opened the scoring in the first period before Carson Bolduc tied the game at one going into the second where Bryden Marsh gave the Silverbacks a 2-1 lead but the Centennials went on to the score two more in the second and third periods for the win.
The Centennials come into tonight on a two-game slide after losing 7-1 in Chilliwack last night and falling 4-2 in Penticton on Wednesday. The Silverbacks are looking to snap a four-game skid after giving up the winning goal with 1:58 remaining in the third period last night in Vernon and dropping a 3-2 back-and-forth game to the Vipers.
Veteran Shane Danyluk of Salmon Arm with his thought’s on the Silverbacks current struggles.
Taro Hirose now lead’s the ‘Backs in scoring with eight points, four goals and four assists in his first eight games.
Merritt has 11 returnees from last season’s team which finished fourth in the Interior division (31-22-4-1), eight points ahead of the fifth place Silverbacks. The Centennials have lost five of their top six scorers from 2013-14 with leading scorer Diego Cuglietta returning.
The Silverbacks won the 2013-14 season series 3-1-1-2, outscoring the Centennials 27-23. The Backs were 0-2-1-1 at the Nicola Valley Memorial Arena last season. The Silverbacks had a 9-14-1-5 record on the road in 2013-14, while the Centennials were 17-7-4-1 at home.
The Silverbacks conclude three consecutive road games tonight, with the next home game for the Backs on Friday, October 17th as the Silverbacks will host the Victoria Grizzlies at 7p.m. at the Shaw Centre in Salmon Arm.
All Silverbacks regular season and playoff games are webcast via http://www.fasthockey.com as well as audio only at http://mixlr.com/sasilverbacks/ Also, all Silverbacks road games are broadcast on CKVS-FM 93.7 http://www.voiceoftheshuswap Tonight’s broadcast from Merritt will begin with the Pre-game show at 7:15p.m., the opening Face-off is set for 7:30p.m.