The Centennials mustered the most offense they have in the post season, but it wasn’t enough against the defending champion Spruce Kings as Merritt fell 5-3.
For the third game in a row the Centennials struck first. After going unsuccessful on the powerplay for the first two preseason games, the Cents finally managed to light the lamp with the extra man. Newcomer Troy Quinn threaded a needle up ice to Daniel Tkac who snuck in behind the D and went top corner on Jett Alexander to make it 1-0. However, much like in the first two preseason games, the Centennials had trouble defending the lead as under a minute later Chong Min Lee would tie things up for the Spruce Kings beating Aiden Hosein. After the first, shots were 13-12 in favour of Prince George.
In the second period the Spruce Kings got the go-ahead goal from former Centennials AP Brett Pfoh at the 10:01 mark. This time it was the Cents turn to play spoiler as Quinn found Payton Matsui with a go-ahead pass and he scored just over a minute later with a shot up and over the blocker-side of Alexander to tie things at 2’s. Brett Pfoh would regain the lead for the Spruce Kings just two minutes later in a back and forth period of action. Shots after 2 were 25-17.
The third saw the Spruce Kings jump out to an early lead as just 11 seconds in Nicholas Poisson tallied with a move to the backhand on Kosik to give PG the two goal lead. With the Cents heading to the powerplay, Quinn had enough dishing and rifled one top corner after a pass from Joey Berkopec to get the Cents back within one at 4-3. Finn Williams quickly restored the 2 goal lead on the following shift and that would be the final, 5-3 in favour of the Spruce Kings. Final shots were 35-31.
The Cents will look to capture their first win of the exhibition season in their finale on Friday at the Nicola Valley in a rematch against the Spruce Kings.