Jacob Berger made 42 saves, including 19 of 20 in the third period, to backstop the Merritt Centennials to a 5-1 home win over the Penticton Vees that gets the Cents on the board in the best-of-seven, now trailing 2-1.
Michael Regush opened the scoring for the home side in the first and it was Tyler Ward’s eighth of the postseason early in the second that was the winner. Cade Gleekel made it 3-0 heading to the third and after Nicholas Wicks made it a four-goal Cents edge, Chris Klack got the Vees on the board.
Stephan Seeger sealed the deal with an empty-net goal with 1:13 to go. Game 4 goes Tuesday at 7 p.m. in Merritt
The Powell River Kings didn’t score until the third period but made it count, getting tallies from Kyle Betts and Cam Donaldson to come back and defeat the Victoria Grizzlies 2-1 and take a 2-1 series lead. Scoreless after one, Jamie Rome got the Grizz on the board in the second with a goal at the 15:57 mark. Betts tied the game just past the five-minute mark of the third and Donaldson’s winner came just past the midway mark of the final frame. Brian Wilson made 37 saves for the win while Matthew Galajda turned aside 33 for Victoria. Game 4 goes at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday in Powell River.
A four-goal first period paved the way for the Vernon Vipers on the way to a 7-1 road win in Trail and a 3-0 lead in the series. Steven Jandric, Ryan Brushett and Luke Gingras scored to chase Linden Marshal but replacement Zach Dyment was soon greeted by a Jimmy Lambert tally. Troy Ring got the Smokies on the board near the midway mark of the second but Niko Karamanis had a reply under five minutes later. Hunter Zandee and Brett Stapley added on in the third. Darion Hanson made 34 saves for the win. Game 4 goes Tuesday at 7 p.m. from Trail.