Wenatchee, WA. – The Wenatchee Wild let a late lead slip away, dropping a 3-2 overtime contest to the Vernon Vipers, in front of 3,011 Saturday night at the Town Toyota Center.
After a scoreless first period, Wenatchee’s Mike Coyne (Buffalo, NY) scored from Dakota Raabe (Dana Point, CA) and Kyle Stephan (Barrie, ON) assisted at 2:00, giving the Wild a 1-0 lead. Four minutes later, Jagger Williamson tied it up for Vernon, assisted by Griffin James and Liam Finlay at 6:00, squaring the contest at 1-1. But, not quite four minutes later, Wenatchee regained the lead, as Stephan scored from Raabe and Coyne at 9:55, putting the Wild on top 2-1 after two.
That lead would hold until the final minute of the third. With the goaltender out for an extra attacker, the Vipers’ Odeen Tufto scored from Latrell Charleson and Williamson at 19:23, tying the game 2-2 and forcing overtime.
In the extra session, Jimmy Lambert poked home a loose puck to settle the contest. Tufto assisted at 4:10, giving Vernon the 3-2 win.
Wenatchee outshot Vernon 35-21 on the night. Chase Perry (Andover, MN) made 18 saves for the Wild, Adam Shortridge 33 for the Vipers. Wenatchee went 1-5 on the power play and 6 of 6 on the penalty kill. “That’s a tough one.” said Wenatchee Wild Head Coach/General Manager Bliss Littler. “Outplayed them most of the night, we made a mistake in the last minute, that’s a tough one to take. Give them (Vernon) credit, they hung in there, their goaltender played well. We had our chances where we should have been up more than a goal, that’s unfortunate. I do think the penalties cost us tonight. We did a great job on the kill, but the penalties were, our defenseman down in the end, that’s unfortunate we played better than that tonight, should have got both points.”
With the win, Vernon improves to 11-12-0-1 on the season, the Wild slip to 14-5-2-2 on the season, one point behind first-place Chilliwack in the Mainland Division. Wenatchee hits the road next weekend, playing at Coquitlam on Friday, November 20th, Chilliwack on Saturday, November 21st and then Surrey on Sunday, November 22nd.
Battle For The Border