The Penticton Vees closed out their World Championship weekend with a 5-1 win against the Trail Smoke Eaters on Saturday, Jan. 11.
Both teams were dressed in classic jerseys for the night, with Penticton wearing the colours of the 55 world champion Vees, while Trail wore the jerseys of the 61 gold-medal Smoke Eaters.
Ivan McLelland, the goalkeeper for the champion Vees, dropped the ceremonial puck for the game and lent his support for the team.
Ivan McLelland, the goalkeeper for the ’55 World Champion Vees, dropped the ceremonial puck for the World Champion Weekend game in Penticton on Jan. 11. (Phil McLachlan – Western News)
The Vees came in ready to even the score for the weekend, after losing 3-4 in Trail the night before, the loss bringing the second-place Smoke Eaters closer to taking first away from Penticton.
Five different players on the Vees bench would score during the night.
Liam Malmquist started off the scoring for the night with a pass from Carson Kosobud for his 14th goal of the season, beating the Trail goalkeeper with a blocker-side shot 7:06 into the game.
Vees goalkeeper Carl Stankowski kept the first period scoreless for Trail, facing down two powerplays and eight shots from the Smoke Eaters.
Tristan Amonte gathered up the rebound off a shot from Colton Kalezic to extend the Vees lead with 1:34 left to go in the first period.
Another eight shots failed to make their way past Stankowski in the second period, while the Vees were able to find an opening with 19 seconds remaining.
Lukas Sillinger passed to Jackson Niedermayer, who fired his shot from the faceoff circle and past the Trail goalkeeper for his 17th goal of the season.
The period opened with another Vees goal, this time from Tyler Ho. Picking up the puck off an attempted Trail pass, Ho skated down the ice to earn his double-digit goal of the season 2:47 in.
Despite their best efforts, the Vees couldn’t keep the shutout alive through the whole game, as Trail found the back of the net off 16:35 into the third, off one of their two shots for the period.
Danny Weight was quick to retake the momentum, earning his 19th goal of the season with an assist from Jack Barnes 30 seconds after the Trail goal.
The Vees’ next game is Wednesday in Vernon, where they take on the Vipers. They return to home ice on Friday, when they take on the Merritt Centennials starting at 7 p.m.
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