So far, the Vernon Vipers are O for the Okanagan and looking for O as in Offence.
The Snakes fell to 0-4 in the B.C. Hockey League’s Okanagan Cup pre-season tournament featuring the four Okanagan squads, dropping a 4-1 decision at Kal Tire Place Saturday, Oct. 10, to the Penticton Vees, who improved to a perfect 6-0.
The Vipers have only scored four goals in the pre-season.
Vernon was much improved from their 4-0 loss to the Vees three nights earlier in Penticton, with the visitors scoring a pair of empty-net goals to clinch the victory Saturday.
The Vees jumped on the Vipers early thanks to two straight powerplays. Penticton scored on both as Jack Bar ripped home a shot past Vernon goalie Kobe Grant just 90 seconds in, and Devlin O’Brien add another a few minutes later, deflecting a slap pass home to make it 2-0.
The Vipers responded after the media timeout and started generating opportunities, but Yaniv Perets was strong in the Penticton goal, keeping it 2-0 after one period.
Vernon got the game within one as Kjell Kjemhus was able to bat home a bouncing puck past Perets to make it 2-1 early in the second. The Vipers nearly tied it up, but Griffen Barr was stopped on a breakaway.
Ryan McGuire, at 18:28 of the third period, and Luc Wilson at 19:13, scored the empty-net markers for the Vees.
Penticton has 12 points to top the Okanagan Cup standings, five more than the West Kelowna Warriors (3-2-1), who salvaged a split of their home-and-home series with Salmon Arm with a 3-2 win in the Shuswap Saturday. The Silverbacks were 5-4 winners Friday in West Kelowna.
The Gorillas sit third in the Okanagan Cup at 1-3.
Salmon Arm visits Vernon Friday, Oct. 16, and the two squads play at the Shaw Centre in Salmon Arm Saturday, Oct. 17.
The Vees will look to make it seven straight wins Friday in West Kelowna. The two teams meet at the South Okanagan Events Centre Saturday.