The Silverbacks and Merritt Centennials meet for the third time this season tonight at 7p.m. at the Shaw Centre in Salmon Arm. The Centennials come into Salmon Arm after a 4-3, come from behind, double-overtime victory over the Warriors in West Kelowna last night, as Merritt trailed two nothing after the first period but scored two power-play goals and a short-handed marker to get back in the game.
The Silverbacks began their three-games in as many days weekend at home last night with a 5-2 win over the Cowichan Valley Capitals. Josh Blanchard opened the scoring in the first period on a short-handed penalty shot, Logan Mick scored 13 seconds later and Colton Thibault made it three-nothing 1:07 after that. The visitors got back into the game with a pair of goals in the second period, cutting the ‘Backs lead to 3-2 after 40 minutes. But Blanchard potted his second of the game in the third and Carson Bolduc found the empty net. The Silverbacks out-shot Cowichan Valley 36-24, and each team was one-for-four with the man-advantage.
The ‘Backs power-play is four-for-ten in the two games versus the Cents and the Silverbacks are ranked seventh in the BCHL at 24.39 percent, while the Centennials are three-for-eight with the man-advantage versus the Silverbacks this season and 12th in the BCHL at 19.82 percent. The Silverbacks have scored 20 goals on the power-play along with a pair of short-handed markers, while Merritt has 22 goals with the man-advantage and three short-handed goals. The Centennials have scored 71 goals and have allowed 68 in 21 games, while the ‘Backs have scored 64 and allowed 63 in their first 20 games. John Schiavo leads the Cents in scoring with 14 goals and nine assists in 21 games, while Andrew Farny and Taro Hirose are tied atop the ‘Backs scoring race with seven goals and 11 assists in 20 games.
The Silverbacks have eight wins, seven regulation losses, one tie and four overtimes losses for 21 points in 20 games. The ‘Backs sit in fifth place in the Interior Division, three points behind the Vernon Vipers and Centennials and three points ahead of the Trail Smoke Eaters. The Centennials have 12 wins and nine losses for 24 points in 21 games and are tied with the Vipers for third in the Interior Division.
The Cents spoiled the ‘Backs regular season home opener with a 5-2 victory on Friday, September 26th. Merritt opened the scoring in the first period before the Silverbacks took a 2-1 lead in the second, and the Centennials went onto score four consecutive goals. The ‘Backs settled the score on Saturday, October 11th in Merritt scoring six times in the Nicola Valley and a 6-1 win. The Silverbacks lead one nothing in the first period, and 4-1 after 40 minutes.
‘Backs head coach Brandon West with his thought’s pre-game.
Tonight is the debut of the newest Silverback Josh Laframboise. The ‘Backs acquired the 18-year-old forward from the Penticton Vees yesterday in exchange for the CJHL playing rights of 20-year-old forward Connor Chartier. Laframboise has three goals and five assists, along with four penalty minutes in 21 games this season. The Regina, Saskatchewan product scored one of his goals and three of his assists in the Vees three games versus the Silverbacks. Laframboise is committed to the University of Minnesota Duluth.
Chartier, was most recently with the Spokane Chiefs of the WHL where he spent parts of four seasons. Chartier had one assist in 12 games, along with ten penalty minutes with the Chiefs this season. He is expected to arrive in Penticton this weekend and debut on Wednesday when the Vees host the Langley Rivermen.
The ‘Backs will finish their weekend tomorrow at 3p.m. at home to the Coquitlam Express at the Shaw Centre. The Silverbacks lost 5-4 in Coquitlam on Wednesday, November 5th.
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 the Shaw Centre in Salmon Arm will begin with the Pre-game show at 6:45p.m., the opening Face-off is set for 7p.m.