Warriors rout Smoke Eaters

The Trail Smoke Eaters woes in West Kelowna continued, as the Warriors crushed the Smokies 8-1 on Tuesday.

The Trail Smoke Eaters woes in West Kelowna continued, as the Warriors crushed the Smokies 8-1 on Tuesday at Royal LePage Place.

West Kelowna forward Jonathan Desbiens scored the winner at 11:44 of the first period, when he poked a puck over the line through the legs of Bailey MacBurnie to give the Warriors a 2-0 lead.

The Smokies have been unable to register a point against West Kelowna this season, going 0-5 with two games remaining against the Warriors at the Cominco Arena Feb. 5 and 6. Trail currently sits three points out of a playoff spot with 11 games to play against division rivals, including a home-and-home with the Penticton Vees this weekend.

The Warriors’ Jake Harrison opened the scoring, joining the rush from the bench and blasting a Brett Mennear feed from the circle just 7:40 into the first period. Mennear then deflected a Harrison point shot to give the Warriors a 3-0 lead.

A bad turnover gave the Smokies life late in the frame, as Harlan Orr beat Matthew Greenfield past the glove hand with 1:19 remaining. The Warriors outshot Trail 18-7 in the first period, giving MacBurnie the rest of the night off in favour of Linden Marshall.

A pair of power-play goals highlighted a frantic second period for West Kelowna, as Kylar Hope and Mennear both scored with the man-advantage. Mennear’s second of the night sparked a three goal in one minute and 39 second outburst for the Warriors.

Nick Rutigliano beat Marshall from the point, and Kyle Marino got on the sheet just 31 seconds later.

The four goal outburst came on 13 shots, while Matt Farkas blocked 11 in net for West K, and would cede the crease in the final frame to 16-year-old AP Shane Farkas who plays at Okanagan Hockey Academy in Penticton.

Former Smoke Eater, Bryan Basilico, scored on the power play just 43 seconds into the third to give the Warriors their final tally, and an 8-1 win.

Trail is in Penticton on Friday, and returns home Saturday to play the Vees at 7:30 p.m. at the Cominco Arena.