Prince George, B.C. — A potent offence and a stellar goaltending performance gave the Cariboo Cougars a 6-0 win over the visiting Okanagan Rockets Saturday night.
The Rockets started out the first period strong dominating puck control and firing early and often on Cougar netminder David Readman who earned his 10th win and second shutout of the season. The Cats grabbed momentum midway through the opening period when Ryan Forbes scored shorthanded, beating Rockets goaltender Harrison Whitlock. Forbes then got his second of the game on the power play as the Cougars took a 2-0 lead into the first intermission.
The Cougars doubled their lead in the second with goals from Tyler Povelofskie and Tanner Fjellstrom at which point Whitlock was pulled in favour of Brenden Mills.
Chase Astorino and Jake LeBrun scored three minutes apart in the third as the Cats cruised to the 6-0 victory.
The win was somewhat overshadowed by several simultaneous fights that occured after the final buzzer, including members of both teams’ coaching staff. Astorino and Okanagan defenceman Mackenzie Ferner have been assessed a one-game suspension for fighting. Cougar Head Coach Trevor Sprague and Rockets Coach James Eccles were both given gross misconducts and mandatory minimum three game suspensions for their roles in the affair.
The Cougars win improves their record to 20-8-5, seven points up on both the Chiefs and Canadians for second place in the BCMML. The Rockets loss is their first in 2012, dropping their record to 15-10-6, good for fifth. The two teams face each other in their final meeting of the regular season Sunday morning at 10 at Kin 1.