Victoria (ISN) – Victoria’s Keith Hamilton stopped 37 of 38 shots Friday night as the Royals defeated the Portland Winterhawks 3-1, guaranteeing themselves a spot in the Western Conference playoffs.


The Victoria Royals clinched their first playoff berth in team history and fifth in franchise history on Friday night against the Portland Winterhawks.


Single game tickets for the 2012 WHL Playoffs are available for purchase at the Select Your Tickets box office located at the Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre. Tickets can be purchased at the Select Your Tickets box office, online at or over the phone at (250)220-7777.

The Royals’ playoff game dates, opponents and start times are all to be determined. Only tickets to the first two home games of the playoffs will be made available at this time. Group rates for playoff tickets are also available, starting as low as $10 per ticket.

In a Friday night matchup at the Save-On-Foods Memorial Center the Victoria Royals took on the Portland Winterhawks in the final game of the 2011-2012 WHL regular season. The Royals gave Keith Hamilton the start in net while the Winterhawks countered with Mac Carruth.

The game opened with a playoff-like intensity as both teams looked for the early advantage. Portland had a chance to open the scoring after a Victoria defender’s stick broke at the Winterhawk blue line. Brad Ross looked to have a clear break on goal, but was thwarted on a diving play by Royals’ defenseman Keegan Kanzig. Victoria opened the scoring at the 14:35 mark of the period. Off of a scrum in front of the Portlandnet Royals’ forward Mike Forsyth fired a puck that rebounded off the right pad of Carruth. The bouncing puck found Dakota Conroy at the side of the net for the forward to bang home his 11th goal of the season. Keith Hamilton stopped all 13 shots he faced, including a right pad save on the Winterhawks’ Marcel Noebels in the last minute of the frame. Victoria would take a 1-0 lead into the first intermission.

Portland found the tying goal just 55 seconds into the second period. Ty Rattie created a turnover behind the Victoria net and fed a backhand pass to an unmarked Nicolas Petan in front of the Royals’ net. The Winterhawks’ forward beat Hamilton with a shot over the right shoulder. Victoria killed off two late Portland powerplays to keep the game tied 1-1 after 40 minutes of play.

The Royals scored the go-ahead goal 5:40 into the third period after Dakota Conroy won a battle for the puck along the half boards and fed Mike Forsyth at the top of the left face-off dot. Forsyth ripped a shot high to the glove side that beat Carruth for his third goal of the season. Jamie Crooks increased theVictorialead to 3-1 as he picked up a pass at the right circle and toe dragged around a Portland defender. The Royals’ leading goal scorer fired a shot that beat the Portland netminder to the glove side to round out the scoring and clinch a playoff spot in the 2012 WHL Playoffs. Royals 3 Winterhawks 1.

Victoria went 0/1 = 0.00% on the power play, while Portland was 0/3 = 0.00%. The Winterhawks outshot the Royals 38-32.

For further details or to purchase your playoff tickets today, visit the Victoria Royals Ticket Office,, or call 250-220-7889.