Victoria’s Austin Carroll records hat trick in 4-2 victory against Vancouver.

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Victoria-Royals-(1)

Corey St. Laurent

September 21, 2013, Vancouver, BC (ISN) – In a Friday night match-up at Pacific Coliseum, the Victoria Royals kicked off the 2013-14 WHL regular season against the Vancouver Giants. Patrik Polivka got the call in net for the Royals while the Giants countered with Payton Lee.

Vancouver opened the scoring when Anthony Ast converted at the 4:38 mark while on the powerplay. The Giants nearly added to their lead soon after, but Polivka swept the puck off the goal line to keep it a one-goal game. With five minutes remaining in the frame, the Royals almost drew even, but Jordan Fransoo’s point shot rang off the post. Despite a late push from Victoria, Vancouver headed into the first intermission with a 1-0 lead.

Brandon Magee evened the score for the Royals just 3:28 into the second frame. On a two-on-one break, Logan Nelson fired a pass to the left wing for Magee who redirected the puck past Lee. Austin Carroll later gave Victoria the lead at the 9:44 mark. From behind the net, Nelson spotted Carroll alone in the slot and the Royals’ forward quickly snapped a shot blocker side. Carroll then added his second of the game at 13:14 to give Victoria a two-goal lead. Off of another two-on-one, Magee fed a pass to Carroll at the left post that the Scottsdale, AZ native slid past the Giants’ netminder. Nelson tied a franchise record with assists on all three goals in the middle period and Victoria held a 3-1 advantage after 40 minutes of play.

Carroll completed the natural hat trick 9:44 into the final period. The left winger jumped on a loose puck in the Giants’ crease and banged home a goal that gave the Royals a 4-1 edge. Vancouver then cut the lead to 4-2 on a point shot by Tyler Morrison at the 12:41 mark. With just over one minute remaining in regulation time, Vancouver called a timeout and pulled Lee for the extra attacker, but key saves from Polivka preserved the win for the visitors. Royals 4 Giants 2.

Victoria went 0/2= 0.0% on the powerplay, while Vancouver went 1/3= 33.3%. The Giants outshot the Royals 36-23.

Victoria returns to Vancouver Island tomorrow when they host the Giants for their 2013 Home Opener presented by BMO Bank of Montreal! Tickets for the Royals’ home opener are still available, but moving quickly. Fans wishing to purchase tickets are encouraged to visit the box office in-person, call 250-220-7777 or buy online at www.selectyourtickets.com at their earliest convenience. Puck drop on Saturday night is set for 7:05 p.m. at Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre.

We are Royal Blue, are you? 2013-14 season ticket packages starting from $414 are on sale now! To guarantee you the best seats at the best prices call 250-220-7889, visit www.victoriaroyals.com, or head down to the Victoria Royals Ticketing Office located at Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre.

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