Royals Fall To Giants In Home Opener

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Corey St. Laurent – Photos by David Bukach (ISN)

September 21, 2013, Victoria, BC (ISN) – In a Saturday night clash at Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre, the Victoria Royals held their 2013 home opener against the Vancouver Giants. The Royals gave Patrik Polivka the start in goal, while the Giants responded with Payton Lee.

The B.C. Division rivalry was renewed early in the opening frame when Austin Carroll brought the home crowd to their feet with a spirited tilt against Giants’ defenceman Blake Orban. The best scoring chances of the period came off the sticks of Royals’ forwards Jack Walker and Logan Nelson on a pair of odd man rushes, but neither player was able to put one past Lee. Polivka answered for Victoria when he made two point blank stops late in the period to send the teams into the first intermission scoreless.

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Victoria Royals captain Jordan Fransoo (#4) skates out onto the ice during the pre-game show at the Victoria Royals 2013 WHL regular season home opener at Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre, Victoria, BC – Photo by David Bukach (ISN)

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ancouver Giants goalie Payton Lee (#1) and defender Blake Orban (#4) watch a loose puck slide toward Royals forward Tyler Soy (#17) during the Victoria Royals 2013 WHL regular season home opener at Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre, Victoria, BC – Photo by David Bukach (ISN)

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Vancouver Giants goalie Payton Lee (#1) dives across to cover a loose puck in the crease as Royals centre Logan Fisher (#20) crashes the net during the Victoria Royals 2013 WHL regular season home opener at Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre, Victoria, BC – Photo by David Bukach (ISN) 

Vancouver struck first on a goal by Rob Trzonkowski 53 seconds into the second period when his shot from the right face-off circle eluded Polivka blocker side. The Giants doubled their lead when Carter Popoff found the back of the net on a breakaway effort at the 6:44 mark. The Royals were unable to cut into the lead and Giants held a 2-0 advantage after 40 minutes of play.

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Vancouver Giants goalie Payton Lee (#1) saves a wrap around attempt from Royals centre Logan Fisher (#20) during the Victoria Royals 2013 WHL regular season home opener at Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre, Victoria, BC – Photo by David Bukach (ISN)

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Victoria Royals forward Ben Walker (#10) and Vancouver Giants winger Rob Trzonkowski (28) exchange words during the Victoria Royals 2013 WHL regular season home opener at Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre, Victoria, BC – Photo by David Bukach (ISN)

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Vancouver Giants defender Shaun Dosanjh (#2) argues a call with a linesman during the Victoria Royals 2013 WHL regular season home opener at Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre, Victoria, BC – Photo by David Bukach (ISN) 

The third period began with both teams exchanging scoring chances in transition. Victoria got on the board midway through the frame with a Joe Hicketts’ marker. Hicketts gained control of the puck at the blueline before he unloaded a slap shot high over Lee’s blocker at the 12:53 mark. The Royals pulled Polivka late and pushed hard for the equalizer, but the Giants hung on for the win. Giants 2 Royals 1.

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Victoria Royals winger Jack Walker (#14) slides a pass towards teammate Joe Hicketts (#2) during the Victoria Royals 2013 WHL regular season home opener at Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre, Victoria, BC – Photo by David Bukach (ISN)

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Vancouver Giants goalie Payton Lee (#1) peeks overtop of screening Royals forward Landon Welykholowa (#12) while Giants defender Brett Kulak (#3) prepares to block a shot during the Victoria Royals 2013 WHL regular season home opener at Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre, Victoria, BC – Photo by David Bukach (ISN)

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Victoria Royals forward Brandon Magee (#18) is upended by Giants winger Tim Traber (#21) in front of the Giants crease during the Victoria Royals 2013 WHL regular season home opener at Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre, Victoria, BC – Photo by David Bukach (ISN) 

Victoria went 0/5= 0.0% on the powerplay, while Vancouver went 0/6= 0.0%. The Royals outshot the Giants 31-21.

The Royals will host the Spokane Chiefs for a two-game series that begins this Tuesday, September 24th and concludes Wednesday, September 25th. Puck drop for both games is 7:05 p.m.

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Victoria Royals winger Trent Lofthouse (#8) skates back to his own end during the Victoria Royals 2013 WHL regular season home opener at Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre, Victoria, BC – Photo by David Bukach (ISN)

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Victoria Royals winger Jack walker (#14) looks to find some open space in the Giants zone during the Victoria Royals 2013 WHL regular season home opener at Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre, Victoria, BC – Photo by David Bukach (ISN)

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Vancouver Giants goalie Payton Lee (#1) smiles after backstopping his team to a 2-1 win during the Victoria Royals 2013 WHL regular season home opener at Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre, Victoria, BC. Lee was names first star of the match – Photo by David Bukach (ISN) 

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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