The Valley Wood Remanufacturing Vipers got off to a terrific start in the A Division of the Harvest Cup Atom Development Hockey Tournament Friday night at Kal Tire Place.
The Snakes opened the tourney with a 9-0 thumping of the Abbotsford Hawks and kept the offence rolling with a 10-2 decision over the Kelowna Rockets.
Cayden Hamming recorded the shutout, supported by a strong possession game by the Vipers.
Cody Beckner opened the scoring with a pass from Jace Weir. Bennett Kuhnlein then netted his first of the season and later added an assist. Other Vernon offence came from game MVP Zac Funk (2G), Austin Roest (2G), Steel Quiring (1+2), Weir and Jacob Boden.
Connor Elliot pocketed the opening goal on a determined effort from behind the net against the Rockets.
Quiring made it 2-0 after a pair of crisp passes from Boden and Elliot. Adding further offence for Vernon were game MVP Jakob Jones (2+2), Boden (2), Isaac Thomas, Funk, Roest and Porter Trevelyan.
Owen Swiscoski made some key saves later in the game as the Vipers began to fade.
In other A Division action Friday, the Vancouver Thunderbirds doubled the Rockets 4-2, and the Richmond Blues iced the Thunderbirds 8-2.
H&L crew earns split
In C Division Harvest Cup play Friday at Civic, the H&L Glass Vipers split their opening games, grounding the Williams Lake Timberwolves 5-2 before falling 5-1 to the North Okanagan Knights.
Vernon stormed out of the gate with a dozen unanswered shots before Nick Noren broke the ice. After drawing a penalty on a coast-to-coast rush, Noren bagged the rebound from Emma Elders on the ensuing powerplay.
Williams Lake replied on their first shot of the game, and the next goal wouldn’t come until early in the third period when the Vipers’ John Spraggs sped in alone from centre. The Williams Lake keeper made the first stop, but game MVP Cash Anderson dashed in to deposit the loose change.
Hard Hat winner Brock Holliday looked to pad the lead, twice blazing down the wing for glorious chances. After Maddex Minard sizzled a Chris Bond feed on net, it was Jordyn Morris who broke through with Vernon’s third, lifting the puck over the fallen tender.
Williams Lake snuck closer with a shorthanded goal, but the Vernon powerplay answered right back as Anderson sunk a short putt set up by Nick Noren. The Timberwolves hung around and might have made it a nail-biter were it not for a scintillating toe save by Teja Sheldrake off a breakaway with under five to go.
Chris Bond took Maddex Minard’s centering pass and finished high blocker side to complete the attack.
After surrendering an early goal to North Okanagan, Vernon clamped down and responded early in the second period as Brock Holliday corralled a clearing attempt on the boards and whipped a sharp-angle shot on net. Colby Restiaux banged in the rebound.
The Knights regained the lead six minutes later, and then rode a shorthanded seeing-eye point shot to a 3-1 advantage after two. The Atom Vipers held their explosive northern neighbours to only nine shots in the latter half of the game, but could not capitalize on their own chances. Instead, the opportunistic Knights squeezed in two more late goals. Vernon’s tenacious dee pair of Liam Leibel and Quinn Soon accepted the Hard Hat Award and Player of the Game, respectively.
In other Tier 3 action at the Civic, the Langley Eagles and North Okanagan Knights skated to a 4-4 tie, and Langley later breezed past the South Okanagan Coyotes 11-5.
Coke boys bow in Winfield
In Midget Tier 2 play, the Coca-Cola Vipers lost a pair of tight games at a Winfield tournament Friday in Lake Country.
Braden Gilowski and Josh Decoffe supplied singles as Vernon fell 3-2 to the Kelowna Rockets in their opening game.
Kaden Black, Brenden Zupp and Carl Main handled the Viper attack as they bowed 5-3 to Williams Lake in the late game.
Williams Lake used their size to keep the Vipers on their heels in the third period. Vernon had controlled most of the play to that point.
Alex Laurila turned the hat trick as the Corbett Office Plus Sharks outgunned the Interior Saving Giants 6-3 in Bantam Super League action Friday night at Priest Valley Arena.
The Sharks got singles from Nick Mitchell, Sean Howard and Kevin Sullivan, and Tyson Sampert recorded a pair of assists.
Brogan Houston, Tyler Semeniuk and Kaiden Parton answered for the Giants.