Jagger Williamson had a goal and an assist and Aidan Porter made 24 saves as the Vernon Vipers came back from 2-0 down to beat the Trail Smoke Eaters 3-2 in Game 4 to even their second-round series 2-2.
Owen Ozar and Carter Jones each scored for Trail less than a minute apart late in the first period to give the Smokies a two-goal advantage, but Williamson replied with 2:43 to go to make it 2-1 heading into the intermission. Vipers defenceman Trey Taylor scored his first of the postseason 13 seconds into the second and fellow blueliner Jack Judson notched his third tally of the playoffs with just over five minutes to go in the third period to complete the comeback and give Vernon the 3-2 win.
Not only was Vernon down 2-0 in this game, they were also down 2-0 in the series before winning both games in Trail as the road team has won all four games. The Vipers’ victory sets up a pivotal Game 5 showdown on Friday in Vernon.
The Wenatchee Wild clawed back to even their series after a 4-1 road victory over the Cowichan Valley Capitals. PJ Fletcher scored the lone first-period goal for the Wild and Murphy Stratton added on with his fifth of the playoffs midway through the second period to make it a 2-0 game after two. Brady Lynn made things interesting when he cut the lead to one with a goal 4:48 into the third, but Blake Bargar restored the two-goal advantage for Wenatchee and Marko Reifenberger added an empty-netter in the final seconds to make it a 4-1 final. Wild captain Lucas Sowder had two assists and was named the game’s first star, extending his playoff-scoring lead with his 18th point in 11 games. Austin Park made 26 saves in the Wenatchee crease to earn the win, while Caps goalie Pierce Diamond faced 36 shots and stopped 33 in the loss. With the series now tied 2-2, Game 5 goes Friday night from Wenatchee.