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BCHL Playoff recap – Tuesday, March 6

Derek Brown continued his fine postseason for the Vernon Vipers with two goals in a 4-2 road win over the Salmon Arm Silverbacks that puts Vernon up 3-0 in the series.

Just 12 seconds into the game, Brown opened the scoring and then made it 2-0 late in the opening frame. In the second, Rhett Kingston got one back on the power play for Salmon Arm but they couldn’t find the equalizer and it was Niko Karamanis’ goal late in the third that was the winner for the Vipers

Julian Timba again got the ‘Backs within one but Jagger Williamson iced it with an empty-net tally. Ty Taylor made 28 saves for the win while Kyle Dumba stopped 36 for Salmon Arm. Brown now has four goals in the playoffs and is tied for the scoring lead with eight points in three games. Game 4 is Wednesday at 7 p.m. in Salmon Arm.

John Hawthorne made 52 saves and for the third straight game, the Alberni Valley Bulldogs won in overtime with Michael Sacco performing winning-goal honours in a 3-2 home-ice victory agains the Victoria Grizzlies. After a scoreless first, Marty Westhaver opened the scoring for the Grizzlies at 4:48 of the second but Julian Benner tied it not long after. In the third, Paul Selleck the go-ahead goal for the ‘Dogs and it looked like it might hold up but Victoria forced OT on a shorthanded goal by Matthew Doran with 50 seconds left in regulation. Sacco’s winner came at 15:05 of overtime and makes Alberni Valley a surprise 3-0 leader in their series against the No. 1-seed Grizzlies. Game 4 is Wednesday at 7 p.m. in Alberni Valley.

In Surrey, Desi Burgart scored all four goals for the Surrey Eagles in a 4-2 win over the Langley Rivermen that puts the Eagles up 3-1 in the series. After a scoreless first in which the Eagles had the edge in play, they went up 1-0 early in the second on Burgart’s first of the night. It remained the only goal until he tallied again in the third, on the power play, but Langley replied 60 seconds later with a Daneel Lategan marker. The hats came down at 12:31 of the third for Burgart who was set up by John Wesley but again Langley drew within one on a an Angus Crookshank power-play goal with 2:32 remaining. Burgart got behind the defence in the final minute and took a long flip pass from Wesley before scoring into an empty net to seal it. Mario Cavaliere made 35 saves for the win. Game 5 is Thursday at 7 p.m. in Langley.

Preston Brodziak’s goal at 3:36 of overtime delivered a 2-1 win for the Nanaimo Clippers over the Powell River Kings that evens their series at 2-2. Ethan Kimball had the only goal of the first for the Kings and in the second, it was David Silye tying it for the Clips at the 12-minute mark. Powell River were outsthot 24-13 through 40 minutes but came on in third with a 13-6 edge in shots but couldn’t get the winner past Taz Burman. Nanaimo held the edge in play in OT with a 5-1 shot advantage and Brodziak’s winner came with the ice still mostly unscathed. Game 5 is Thursday at 7 p.m. in Nanaimo.

Tyler Ghirardosi scored a hat trick for the Trail Smoke Eaters to lead them to a 6-3 win over the West Kelowna Warriors, completing a four-game sweep. Ryan Murphy opened the scoring for Trail early in the first but Michael Ryan and Michael Lombardi responded for the Warriors before Ghirardosi got his first to make it 2-2 after one. Chase Stevenson put the Warriors up one at 11:01 of the second but Levi Glasman scored twice to put the Smokies up one going to the third. Ghirardosi got the insurance and one more into an empty net for the hat trick in the third to seal it. Trail is the first team to advance to the Round 2.

Jake Gresh’s first of the playoffs was the winner for the Chilliwack Chiefs in a 3-2 home win over the Prince George Spruce Kings that evens their series at 2-2. After a scoreless first, Ryan Bowen got the Chiefs on the board in the middle frame followed by teammate Bryan Allbee. Ethan De Jong got PG on the board with a shorthanded effort but Gresh’s winner came only 1:04 later. Nolan Welsh had the other Spruce Kings goal in the third. Game 5 is Thursday at 7 p.m. in Prince George.

A five-goal second period that included two goals each from Chris Klack and Wyatt Sloboshan paved the way to a 7-2 road win for the Penticton Vees over the Coquitlam Express. It was a 2-1 Express lead after one on goals by Jack MacNab and Josh Wildauer with Jackson Keane getting the Vees goal but the middle frame was all Penticton. Sloboshan, Marcus Mitchell and Klack got goals 3:05 apart to put the Vees up two. Sloboshan and Klack added their second each late in the second and in the third, Jack Barnes added a power-play tally to round out the scoring. The Vees have a 3-0 lead in the series with Game 4 set for Wednesday at 7 p.m. in Coquitlam.

The Wenatchee Wild got three goals from defencemen, including two from Cooper Zech in a 5-4 win in Merritt over the Centennials that puts the Wild up 3-0 in the series. Zech opened the scoring at 1:06 of the second but Zach Court responded for Merritt shortly after. Jasper Weatherby, with his fifth of the playoffs, scored just past the middle of the second and Zech got his other tally unassisted just over three minutes before the intermission. Court’s second of the night got the Cents within one in the third but Lucas Sowder and Slava Demin, the other blueline scorer, tallied to restore the Wild cushion. Ashton Stockie and Zach Zorn tallied late in the game to get Merritt within one but they couldn’t force OT. Austin Park made 20 saves for the win while Jacob Berger stopped 40 for Merriit. Game 4 is Wednesday at 7 p.m. in Merritt.