Jamie Crooks scores twice as Victoria tops Seattle

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Photos by Devin Milner (ISN)

February 7, 2013, Victoria, BC (ISN) – In a Wednesday night matchup at Save-On-Foods Memorial Center the Victoria Royals looked to extend their 11-game home point streak as they hosted the Seattle Thunderbirds for the second consecutive night. Victoria gave Patrik Polivka the start in net while Seattle countered with Brandon Glover.

Victoria opened the scoring just 2:23 into the first period with a powerplay marker from Austin Carroll. Royals’ forward Brandon Magee handled the puck behind the Seattle net before he slid a backhand pass to Carroll at the top of the crease. Carroll took full advantage and buried a quick shot over the left pad of Glover.

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Victoria Royals defenseman Joe Hicketts (2) manages to interfere with a Seattle Thunderbird forward during a partial break as the shot deflects wide – Photo by Devin Milner (ISN)

Victoria later added to their lead at the 11:01 mark. Carroll collected a loose puck in the left corner and then fed a cross-ice pass to an unmarked Ben Walker at the top of the right face-off circle. Walker wired a low wrist shot that beat the Seattle netminder inside the far post. Jamie Crooks added a third goal for the Royals with less than one minute to play in the first period. Crooks had his initial shot stopped by Glover, but a rebound caused a scramble in front of the Thunderbirds’ net. Crooks followed up on the play and shoveled home the loose puck at 19:11. The late marker sent the Royals into the first intermission ahead 3-0.

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Seattle Thunderbird forward, Delnon (24), tries to break free from a stingy Victoria defence – Photo by Devin Milner (ISN)

The Thunderbirds made a change in net to start the second period as Danny Mumaugh relieved Glover between the pipes. The swap sparked Seattle and Connor Sanvido cut into Victoria’s lead 3:40 into the frame. Luke Lockhart’s point shot was stopped by Polivka, but Sanvido found the rebound amongst traffic and chipped the puck past a sprawling Royals’ netminder.

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The speedy Steven Hodges rounds the Thunderbirds goal late in the third period – Photo by Devin Milner (ISN)

Crooks restored the three-goal advantage with his second goal of the game at the 17:03 mark. After he collected a loose puck at center ice, Crooks broke into the Seattle zone on a partial breakaway. The 21-year-old drove hard to the net before he pulled the puck to his forehand and roofed a quick shot over the glove of Mumaugh. After 40 minutes of play, the Royals held a 4-1 advantage.

The Royals earned chances to extend their lead with two powerplay opportunities in the final frame, but Mumaugh was able to keep the Victoria shooters at bay. The consistent offensive grind from the home side and eight saves from Polivka helped the the Royals maintain their three-goal lead and seal the victory. Victoria 4 Seattle 1.

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Austin Carroll firing one of his many shots in this strong team win by Victoria. Carroll netted the games first goal – Photo by Devin Milner (ISN)

Victoria went 2/5 = 40.0% on the powerplay while Seattle was 0/4 = 0.0%. The Thunderbirds outshot the Royals 32-30.

Victoria now embarks on an 11-day, six-game road trip that begins Friday, February 8th when they take on the Tri-City Americans at the ToyotaCenter. The Royals’ next home game is Friday, February 22nd when they host the Kelowna Rockets for a two-game weekend series.

We are Royal Blue! Are you? Guarantee yourself the best seats for upcoming Royals games by visiting www.selectyourtickets.com, calling 250-220-7777 or visiting the Select Your Tickets box-office at the Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre. Mini-Packs, Vouchers and special rates for groups of 10+ are available by visiting www.victoriaroyals.com or calling 250-220-7889.

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