February 16, 2013, Victoria, BC (ISN) – In a Saturday afternoon matchup at the Panorama Recreation Centre, the South Island Royals welcomed the Thompson Blazers for the first game of a two-game set.
The Royals looked to Markus Daly in net, while the Blazers went with Kyle Michalovsky.
The game started off with a physical tone as South Island defender Garnett Roberts lowered a big open ice hit on Keaton Gordon 30 seconds after the puck-drop. Both teams would exchange powerplay opportunities in the opening half of the frame as they looked for the game’s first marker, but neither were successful. The game’s first tally would come with seven minutes left in the period as Gordon would give Thompson a 1-0 lead. The Blazers’ forward grabbed a puck in the neutral zone before he burst down the right boards and fired a quick shot from the top of the circle that beat Daly over the blocker. The first period would end with Thompson up 1-0.
The Blazers looked to extend their lead less than five minutes into the middle frame after Dexter Robinson stepped into a slap shot in the high slot, but Daly was able to place his blocker on puck and deflect it to the corner. The Royals then looked to respond before the 10 minute mark when Cole Pickup cut to the middle and put a shot on net that Michalovsky turned aside with his left shoulder. South Island would end the frame on the man advantage, but would be unable to beat the Blazers’ goaltender as he continued to stone the Royals and keep it a 1-0 game after 40 minutes.
With only three minutes passed in the final frame, the Blazers would extend their lead to two goals. After Daly made a couple of point blank saves in the South Island crease, Robinson would jump on a rebound and slot it past the outstretched glove of the Royals’ keeper. Thompson would continue to press as they looked for their third when Carson Richards broke in on Daly on a partial breakaway. The Blazers’ winger looked to deke to his right, but Daly slid across to make the left pad stop. South Island would finally grab their first with less than five minutes remaining. Forward Jordan Martin skated into the offensive zone and unleashed a slap shot from the left circle that beat Michalovsky cleanly over the blocker. The Royals comeback would fall short as time expired. Blazers 2 Royals 1
Thompson outshot South Island 26-22.
The Royals and Blazers will conclude their two game set tomorrow, Sunday, February 17th at Westhills Arena. Puck-drop is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. South Island will then conclude the 2012-13 BCMML Regular Season on the road over the next two weekends as they face-off against the Cariboo Cougars and Valley West Hawks respectively. Stay tuned to www.southislandroyals.ca for playoff information.