It turned out to be a productive Family Day for the Trail Smoke Eaters on Monday as they completed the season series sweep of the West Kelowna Warriors with a 5-2 victory.
The road win is a good bounce back effort for the Smokies after falling by the identical score to the Coquitlam Express on Saturday. Even more so with Trail missing two key components of their special teams in captain Philippe Lapointe and Max Kryski, who stayed home due to illness.
Kent Johnson led the way with three assists, surpassing the 100-point milestone with 41 goals and 60 assists on the season, while Owen Ozar tallied twice. Johnson, a Michigan commit, feasted on the Warriors this season tallying 22 points in six games.
Chase Dafoe scored the game winner on the power play, tipping in a Cody Schiavon shot for a 3-1 lead at 13:20 of the second period to give the Beverly, MA. native his sixth goal and 12th point.
The results had little impact on the Interior Division standings as the Smoke Eaters have long since clinched the second seed in the Interior Division and will play the seventh seed cross-over Prince George Spruce Kings, while the eighth seed Warriors face the Interior’s top seed Penticton Vees in the first round of the BCHL playoffs.
The Warriors got off to a promising start when Holden Kodak sniped a cross-ice feed past Trail goalie Matteo Paler-Chow just 2:39 into the opening frame.
However, Matt Osadick evened things up banging in a rebound at 9:38 off a Schiavon point shot, as Trail held a 13-11 shots advantage through 20 minutes.
The Smokies came out determined in the second, and Ozar finished a pretty passing play with Mike Colella and Johnson for a 2-1 lead midway through the period, minutes before Dafoe notched the game winner.
Warriors forward Brendan Pigeon scored his ninth of the year to cut the lead to one at 3:56 of the third, but Ozar’s 24th goal at 9:22 and Jaden Senkoe’s tally with four minutes remaining iced the game for the Smoke Eaters.
Trail outshot the Warriors 41-33 and went 1-for-5 on the power play and 3-for-4 on the penalty kill.
Johnson, Schiavon and Ozar were named the game’s three stars.
Trail next plays the Salmon Arm Silverbacks on Friday, their last regular season home game, before heading to Merritt to finish off the season against the Centennials.