PHOTO CREDIT: Russ Alman / Digital Media Northwest
by Arch Ecker
With a season high crowd of 3,351 in the house for “WAHA Night” to benefit the Wenatchee Amateur Hockey Association, the Wenatchee Wild thrilled the home fans with a 3-1 win to complete the weekend sweep of the Penticton Vees. The Wild have now won four in a row, equaling a season high.
After a scoreless first period in which Penticton outshot the Wild 13-4, Wenatchee flipped the script in the middle frame and took the lead when AJ Vanderbeck followed his own rebound with a backhander at 3:50, assisted by Lucas Sowder and Jasper Weatherby. The Vees tied it up when Owen Sillinger was fed a stretch pass that sprung him on a breakaway that he slipped between the pads of Austin Park at 13:08 and the game was tied at 1-1 heading into the final period. Wenatchee took the lead for good at 4:55 of the third on a Vees turnover that Nathan Iannone fired high on the blocker side for a 2-1 lead, with August Von Ungern-Sternberg and Sam Morton earning assists. Lucas Sowder added an empty net tally in the final minute as the Wild rang up their fourth win in a row, and fourth this season over the Vees. Austin Park made some tremendous stops, 27 in all to post his fifteenth win of the year.
Wenatchee (25-9-2-1) kicks off a three-game road trip on Wednesday with their final visit of the year to Cominco Arena to face the Trail Smoke Eaters (22-13-2-0). The road trip continues on to Salmon Arm on Friday and Penticton on Saturday. Following that, the Wild will have 9 of their next 10 games on home ice. Group ticket packages for all games are on sale now at the Wild office by calling 509-888-7825.