Royals Cut Down By Hitmen


Steven Hodges scores his 50th WHL goal for Victoria

February 16, 2013, Calgary, AB (ISN) – In a Saturday night contest at the Scotiabank Saddledome, the Victoria Royals went up against the Calgary Hitmen. The Royals started Coleman Vollrath in net, while the Hitmen countered with Chris Driedger.

The Royals outshot the Hitmen early in the game, but Cody Sylvester opened the scoring for Calgary on a five-on-three powerplay at 14:59. Brooks Macek picked up the puck in the left corner before he made a cross-crease pass to Sylvester who was parked at the right post. Sylvester was able to tap home his 32nd goal of the season to give the Hitmen a 1-0 lead. Victoria pressed hard in the final minutes of the frame, but Calgary held the lead after the end of the first period.

Tension between the two teams boiled over in the second period when the Royals’ Keegan Kanzig and the Hitmen’s Jaynen Rissling went toe-to-toe in a heavyweight scrap at 7:27. The 6-5, 240 lb Kanzig and 6-4, 225 lb Rissling exchanged blows, but it was Kanizg who scored the takedown. Brady Brassart then extended the Calgary lead at the 10:24 mark. Greg Chase flew down the right wing and found Brassart in the high slot where he wristed a shot low glove side on Vollrath. After 40 minutes of play the Hitmen carried a 2-0 lead.

Calgary added a third goal on Sylvester’s second of the night at 9:59 while on the powerplay. Zane Jones spun and fired a pass to Sylvester who had cut to the front of the net before he slid the Jones feed under Vollrath. The Royals put an end to Driedger’s shutout bid at 17:25 when Steven Hodges potted the 50th goal of his WHL career on the powerplay. From the low slot, Hodges made a quick move to his backhand before he flung the puck on goal and beat the Calgary netminder over his shoulder. The Royals continued to apply pressure in the final minutes, but could not draw any closer. Hitmen 3 Royals 1.

Victoria went 1/8=12.5% on the powerplay, while Calgarywent 2/6=33.3%. The Royals outshot the Hitmen 32-25.

Victoria now heads to Edmonton to face the Oil Kings in the final game of a six-game road swing. Puck drop is set for 3:00 p.m. Pacific Time. The Royals’ next home game is Friday, February 22nd when the Kelowna Rockets visit the Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre for a 7:05 p.m. start.

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