The Merritt Centennials ran out of steam in their final game of the weekend against the Vernon Vipers and fell by a score of 5-1.
The first period didn’t start the way the Centennials hoped as in the first minute Matt Kowalski failed a Michigan attempt but the puck went right to the goal mouth for Ryan Shostak who scored to make it 1-0 early on. Shostak would add another one in the first period set up by Kowalski back door to make it 2-0, and the Cents would find themselves in a hole early. Tanner Marshall had a buzzer beating save in the dying seconds on a breakaway to keep the team trailing by two. Shots after one were 16-9 Vernon.
Brophy Dunne was able to answer early for the Cents in the second period with a floater from the blue line top corner to make it 2-1, but Jack Glen and the Vipers would answer a couple minutes later to make it 3-1, and despite plenty of pressure throughout the second and 16 shots thrown on the Cents couldn’t add another one. Shots after 2 were 25-25.
In the third with the Cents needing one early to give them a shot of adrenaline to the legs, it was the Vipers who’d add another one early in the third from Bulawka. The Vipers would then get an early powerplay, and Jackson Caller would convert to make it 5-1. The Cents ran out of gas in the third and only mustered 3 shots to the Vipers 20. Final shots were 45-28.
After the game Assistant Coach Zach Wright said the chances were there, but the Cents couldn’t convert.
“The boys were putting the pressure on in that 2nd period and you felt if they could get one it could turn the game around. We couldn’t find it and we ran out of legs.”
The Cents will look to get back in the win column in their final game on home ice this Saturday – Ty Pozzobon Mental Health Night. This Wednesday you can join the team at Empty Keg Brewhouse from 5-9pm for the last meet and greet of the season.