By gaining a single point in Penticton last night, the Cents improve to 5-1-0-2 in their last eight games and move into third place in the BCHL’s Interior Conference, two points back of the second place Vernon Vipers.
Merritt has a one point lead over Westside and Prince George, but both the Warriors and Spruce Kings have a game in hand on the Centennials. The Cents are three points clear of Chilliwack, but the Chiefs have three games in hand.
Here’s the summary from each of the last two games (from merrittcentennials.com):
Cents Fall 5-4 in OT to Penticton, but Single Point Moves Them Into 3rd
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Penticton, BC – October 29, 2011
Connor Reilly scored with just 58 seconds left in overtime as the Merritt Centennials fell 5-4 to the Penticton Vees in the BC Hockey League action Saturday evening at the South Okanagan Events Centre.
Jakob Reichert scored twice for the Centennials (6-5-1-3) while Billy Marshall and Dustin Lebrun notched a goal each. Dylan Chanter, Silvan Harper, Sean Maktaak, Brendan Lamont, Richard Sabourin and AP call-up Braeden Hikichi each had an assist in the OT loss.
Mike Reilly, Garrett Hendrickson, Cody DePourcq and Steven Forgarty also scored for the Vees (11-2-0-0-1). Joey Benik pitched in with four assists for Penticton.
Merritt netminder Lino Chimienti made 27 saves in the loss, while Vees goalie Michael Garteig stopped 34 shots for the win.
The Centennials finished the night 0-for-4 on the power play and Penticton wound up 4-for-6 with the man advantage.
With the single point, the Cents now have just one regulation loss in their last eight games and moved into third place in the BCHL’s Interior Conference, one point ahead of Westside and Prince George. Merritt is two points back of second place Vernon.
The Centennials next game is in Salmon Arm on Wednesday night, November 2nd, against the Silverbacks.
Cents Edge Salmon Arm 6-5 in Overtime
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Salmon Arm, BC – October 28, 2011
The Merritt Centennials stormed back from 4-1 and 5-2 deficits to defeat the Salmon Arm Silverbacks 6-5 in overtime in BC Hockey League action Friday night at the Sunwave Centre.
Brandon Bruce paced the Centennials (6-5-1-2) offence with three goals, including the winner, while Billy Marshall, Jakob Reichert and Payton Schaefer also scored. Ross Mancuso had two assists in the win while Schaefer, Tyler Martin, Silvan Harper, Brent Fletcher, Sean Maktaak, Dustin Lebrun, and Richard Sabourin also added single helpers.
Devin Muller led Salmon Arm (3-7-0-3) with two goals while Bryce Gervais had a goal and an assist. Brett Knowles ad Alex Gillies added single markers. Morgan Zulinick chipped in with three assists in the loss while Matt Brown had two helpers.
Tyler Steel started the game for Merritt and was pulled after allowing four goals on 11 shots. Lino Chimienti came on in relief and gave up just one goal on 17 shots to get the win. Kurt Williams stood tall in the Silverbacks net. Despite giving up all six Cents goals, he made 43 saves in the loss.
Merritt finished the night 0-for-5 on the power play while Salmon Arm went 2-for-4 with the man advantage.
Merritt’s next game is the second of three straight away from home as the Centennials head to Penticton Saturday to face the Vees.