A few inches is all that separated the Salmon Arm Bantam Tier 2 Scotiabank Silvertips from earning an important point against the Burnaby Winter Club in a round-robin game of the provincial tournament on Monday evening at the Shaw Centre.
With a minute remaining in the game, ’Tips captain Cole Nisse caught the Burnaby defence flat footed, driving to the net and beat goaltender Matthew Ponis on the short side with a wrist shot, but was unable to beat the post.
Burnaby’s Kalen Szeto put the game out of reach for the Silvertips when he scored an empty netter to make the final score 4-2.
Salmon Arm fell behind 1-0 early in the first frame on a power play for the visitors.
Burnaby looked poised to increase their lead, but Koltin Dodge had other plans as he made numerous astonishing saves to keep his home side in the contest, including a save on a penalty shot.
Frequent penalties against Salmon Arm interrupted any possibility of them getting out of their zone and creating offence, which eventually led to a late goal by Burnaby in the first.
In the second period, the Silvertips came out looking like a new team and found and early goal, breathing new life into the game.
Each side traded chances but neither side could find another goal in the middle frame.
Josh Olson and Brayden Haskell both had chances drift just wide of the net.
Burnaby increased their lead to 3-1 in the third, before a late goal by Salmon Arm set up an entertaining and nerve-racking final five minutes of the game.
More than once, Salmon Arm looked to tie the game but by the narrowest margin failed to get the equalizer.
The ’Tips opened the tournament Sunday with a 5-2 loss to the Port Moody Panthers.
The Silvertips played their second game of the day against Fort St. John.
Salmon Arm had two beautiful goals to jump out to an early lead, one a top-shelf shot, the second a marvellous deke.
The diligent Flyers team, however, got to work in the third period and managed to pull themselves back into the game but it ended 2-1.
The ’Tips remain in the hunt for a spot in the semifinals and faced off against Trail on Tuesday, after the Observer’s deadline.