In what was the best showing by far from the Smoke Eaters in this young season they still came up short falling 3-2 in the dying seconds of overtime against the Silverbacks.
It looked like it was going to be an extremely busy night for the young netminder in Logan Terness who got his first start of the year. Terness was under siege in the first period facing 21 shots from Salmon Arm. The 16-year-old from Burnaby, BC stopped almost everything he saw before a back door tap in finally got past him late in the first. William Poirier was able to give the Backs the lead with the power play goal in the first.
The Smoke Eaters would get their answer courtesy of Kent Johnson who collected his first of the year with a shorthanded goal. Johnson and Ghirardosi forced the turnover in the Salmon Arm end that left Johnson alone in front for the goal.
The Smoke Eaters, despite being outshot 21-4 in the first came out and dominated the second period. They only fired 12 shots at Daniel Kruss but had a large majority of the possession. Despite failing to score on a five minute major penalty they were still rewarded late in the period as Colby Elmer, who was named third star, got a break away on a bad change from Salmon Arm to give the Smokies the lead.
The Silverbacks would get one back late in the third to send things to overtime where it went the distance to find a winner. The Backs would start the overtime on a power play but some great defending by the Smoke Eaters got it killed it off. Either team had chances and aside from scoring the Smokies had two grade A opportunities to win it. Colella was stopped on a breakaway that started at his own blueline and then Ozar fed Johnson in tight who was robbed by the right pad on Kruss. The Silverbacks would get an opportunity the other way, as the puck would hop on Ghirardosi in front of the Backs net leading to a 3-on-1 for the Silverbacks going the other way, as captain Akito Hirose would get the winner with just 5.8 on the clock.
The Smoke Eaters now drop to 0-3-1 to start the year despite a very strong performance. But as Jeff Tambelini noted prior to tonight’s game, more often then not, they’ll need more than two goals to win hockey games in the BCHL. As mentioned Terness was stellar in the loss facing 45 shots by nights end allowing only 3 goals. Terness was named the Fortis Energy Player of the game. The young man turns 17 on Wednesday when the Smoke Eaters face the visiting Powell River Kings at 7pm.