Penticton Vees player Jackson Keane was all alone in front of the net but unable to get a solid shot off to get the puck past Langley Rivermen goalie Braedon Fleming in the first period on Wednesday night at the South Okanagan Events Centre. The Vees lost the game 2-1. Kristi Patton/Western News Staff

Riverman hand Vees their first loss of the season

Penticton Vees unable to bury shots against Langley Rivermen goalie

Despite firing 21 shots on net in the third period, the Penticton Vees lost their first game of the season Wednesday night, 2-1 to the Langley Rivermen.

The scoring was opened in the first period by the Rivermen off a shot from down low. With bodies in front of the goal, Trevor St. Jean was able to fire a shot from the left-wing face-off circle that beat Adam Scheel on the glove side. The goal came 5:03 into the period.

Penticton was an inch away from finding the back of the net multiple times in the period, twice off shots that hit the post and once when Jackson Keane fired the puck over the goal while alone in front.

The Vees found their game in the third and peppered Braedon Fleming constantly throughout the final 20 minutes. Unfortunately for the Vees, it was Langley finding the back of the net first.

Scheel came out of his goal to play the puck at the side of the net, but his backhand pass hit Ryan O’Connell’s stick and the Rivermen forecheckers capitalized. Ethan Leyh was able to find the puck on his backhand and slide it through Scheel’s five hole before he was able to scramble back into the net.

Two and a half minutes later the Vees were given their third power-play opportunity of the game and took advantage.

Massimo Rizzo threw the puck from the right-wing goal line across the ice for Cassidy Bowes sneaking in from the blue line. Bowes’ shot from the circle hit Dakota Boutin’s leg and fluttered over Fleming to cut the lead down to 2-1. It was Boutin’s fourth goal of the season.

Despite lots of pressure late in the third period, the Vees couldn’t solve the Rivermen goaltender who finished with 36 saves in the 2-1 victory.

The Vees have just one day to prepare for their next game as they welcome the Merritt Centennials (4-8-0-2) to the South Okanagan Events Centre on Friday night.

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