The Silverbacks look to get back on track tonight as they are back on home ice at the Shaw Centre in Salmon Arm hosting the Island Division leading Nanaimo Clippers at 7p.m. The Clippers began their three games in as many days road trip with their sixth consecutive victory, 5-4 over the Smoke Eaters in Trail last night. Nanaimo is ranked 2nd overall in the BCHL, eight points behind the Penticton Vees and the Clippers are 15th in the weekly CJHL’s Top 20. Meanwhile, the ‘Backs are coming off of an 8-3 loss to the Spruce Kings in Prince George on Thursday after trailing 5-0 in the first period.
Nanaimo leads the BCHL with 171 goals in 41 games, and the second fewest goals against of 113 behind Penticton with 81. The ‘Backs are 14th with 133 goals in 40 games, and ranked sixth with 131 goals against.
Brendan Taylor leads the Clippers with 20 goals and 24 assists in 41 games and is 17th in BCHL scoring, while Cole Maier has 20 goals and 22 assists in 41 games and is ranked 24th. Andrew Farny leads the Silverbacks and is 28th overall and the second highest scoring defenseman in the BCHL with 11 goals and 30 assists in 40 games. Guillaume Decelles of the Clippers is third among BCHL goalies, 26-7-0 with one shutout and 2.42 goals against average and .930 save percentage. The ‘Backs Angus Redmond is 8th, 13-16-2 with two shutouts and 2.94 goals against average and .903 save percentage.
The Silverbacks are 17-14-3-5 with 42 points in 40 games. The ‘Backs are fifth in the Interior Division, five points behind the West Kelowna Warriors who are now in fourth place but the Silverbacks have two games in hand on the Warriors. The ‘Backs trail the Merritt Centennials by six points, as the Cents are now in third by one point over West Kelowna and Merritt has two games in hand on the Warriors. The Silverbacks are 12 points ahead of Trail who is in sixth place.
Nanaimo has the third ranked power-play in the BCHL, 25.99 percent with 46 power-play goals. The Silverbacks man-advantage is 8th, 22.76 percent with 33 power-play goals. The Clippers penalty-kill is 10th, 77.01 with six short-handed goals and 43 power-play goals against. The ‘Backs penalty-kill is ranked 11th, 76.88 with seven short-handed markers and 37 power-play goals against.
The Clippers are 29-11-0-1 with 41 points in 59 games. Nanaimo leads the Island Divison by 11 points over the Powell River Kings with two games in hand.
The Silverbacks are 9-7-2-2 at the Shaw Centre this season and 1-2-0-1 versus the Island Division. The Clippers are 14-7-0-0 on the road and 4-0-0-1 versus the Interior Division.
Nanaimo is 9-1-0-0 in it’s last 10 games, while the Silverbacks have points in 8 of their last 10 (7-2-1-0).
Tonight is the first meeting of the season between the two team’s and they will meet again in eight days as the Clippers host the ‘Backs on Sunday, January 25th in Nanaimo to conclude the Silverbacks three games in as many days Island road trip.
‘Backs Head Coach Brandon West with his thought’s ahead of tonight’s game.
The Clippers finish their Interior Division road swing tomorrow afternoon in the Nicola Valley against the Merritt Centennials, while the Silverbacks will host the Powell River Kings tomorrow afternoon at 3p.m. at the Shaw Centre.
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.