The Merritt Centennials (4-2-0) fell 4-1 for the second straight night to the Penticton Vees (2-0-0) Saturday. Stephan Seeger scored the only goal for the Centennials, who have now lost 14 straight playoff games to the Vees. The Vees were led by Duncan Campbell who finished the night with two points. Cents Head Coach/GM Joe Martin says his team just simply wasn’t good enough.
“We need to be more determined. Right now, we’re not generating enough goals. Three is too many to give up to Penticton. We have to be better.”
The game started off on the wrong foot for the Centennials for the second straight night. Jamie Armstrong moved in down the right side and fired a shot that went through the legs of Jake Berger to open the scoring. It was a goal that Berger would’ve liked to have back, and it came on the second shot on net for the Vees. That was the only goal of the period, with no penalties called. Shots were 11-8 for the Vees after 20 minutes.
The Centennials played with some fire in the second period, getting involved physically. However, they couldn’t generate much offensively as the Vees stymied the Cents attack. The Vees held the Centennials in their own zone for long stretches, and broke through with a goal. The Cents got caught napping as Duncan Campbell was wide open on a backdoor pass to wire it home to make it 2-0. For the second straight game the Cents went into the third down two goals.
After the Centennials only generated 6 shots on net in the second period, they didn’t get too many more as they sat at 4 shots through the first 10 minutes. The Vees then made it 3-0 when Taylor Ward was left open at the side of the net for a tap in. With just under two minutes left, off an offensive zone faceoff Stephan Seeger rifled home his 3rd of the post season to pull the Centennials within two, but the Vees added an empty netter and won again 4-1.
NOTES: There were no penalties called until 30 seconds left in the game. The teams combined for 10 minor penalties in game one. Tyler Ward’s five game point streak was snapped, as he failed to score a point. After scoring 21 goals in four games in the first round, the Cents only have two through two games in the second round. The Centennials now trail the series 2-0, which shifts back to Merritt for game three on Monday.