The Vernon Vipers officially punched their ticket to the B.C. Hockey League playoffs in shutout style.
Roan Clarke made 27 saves for his first BCHL shutout as the Vipers blanked the Wenatchee Wild 2-0 at Kal Tire Place Tuesday, Feb. 15. It was the first of three straight games between the two clubs. They’ll play again in Washington state Thursday and Friday.
The win clinched a playoff spot for the Vipers (18-15-4-3) and moved the sixth-place Snakes to within a point of the fifth-place Cranbrook Bucks in the Interior Conference. Vernon is now eight points up on the seventh-place Trail Smoke Eaters.
The Vipers struck on their first shot of the game Tuesday as captain JoJo Tanaka-Campbell ripped a low shot from the left circle to make it 1-0.
In the third, the Wild pushed the pace, but the Vipers did a nice job of keeping them to the outside. Zack Tonelli then brought the crowd to their feet with a phenomenal individual effort to make the game 2-0. The Wild pulled goalie Tyler Shea with about three minutes left, but couldn’t solve Clarke.
Wenatchee sits in eighth place in the Interior.
SNAKE BITES: Former Vipers forward Adam Tambellini and former Salmon Arm Silverbacks forward Ben Street saw their Olympic medal dreams end Wednesday, Feb. 16, with a 2-0 loss to Sweden in the quarterfinals. The Swedes scored both goals in the third period including an empty-netter. Tambellini had two goals and two assists Tuesday in a 7-2 win over China to advance to the quarters.
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