by Corey St. Laurent
December 15, 2013, Lethbridge, AB (ISN) – In a Sunday afternoon matchup at Enmax Centre, the Victoria Royals squared off against the Lethbridge Hurricanes. The Royals gave Coleman Vollrath the start in goal, while the Hurricanes countered with Teagan Sacher.
Victoria was forced to kill two penalties in the first half of the opening frame to keep it scoreless as Vollrath came up with multiple timely saves. With five minutes left in the period, Taylor Crunk and Josh Derko dropped the gloves in a spirited tilt. Brandon Magee then struck for the Royals on the powerplay to open the scoring with 3:25 left in the period. Magee received a pass from Steven Hodges and carried it to the right face-off circle where he fired a shot past Sacher for the 1-0 lead. Just 1:10 later, Ryan Gagnon scored his first WHL goal to give Victoria a two-goal advantage. The Quesnel, BC native tipped Tyler Soy’s point shot over the glove of Sacher from the slot to give the Royals a 2-0 lead after 20 minutes of play.
Austin Carroll increased Victoria’s lead to three goals 3:18 into the middle stanza. Gagnon kept the puck onside and made a nice cross-ice feed to Carroll who one-timed a shot past Sacher. Tyler Wong later put Lethbridge on the board with a powerplay marker at the 7:20 mark to make it 3-1. Ben Walker regained the three-goal lead for the Royals at the 12:16 mark of the second period. The Edina, MN native flew down the right wing and snapped a wrist shot over the blocker of Sacher. With 2:30 left in the period, Hodges made it 5-1 after he jammed in his own rebound. Former Hurricane Axel Blomqvist picked up an assist on the Hodges marker. Corbin Boes then replaced Sacher in the Lethbrige crease and Victoria headed into the second intermission with a commanding four-goal lead.
Mitch Skapski added another goal for the Royals 3:53 into the third period. Skapski skated down the right wing and drove to the front of the net before he lifted the puck over the shoulder of Boes to make it 6-1. Victoria and Vollrath kept Lethbridge off the scoresheet the rest of the way as the Royals recorded their 11th road victory of the season. Royals 6 Hurricanes 1.
Victoria went 1/3 = 33.3% on the powerplay, while Lethbridge went 1/7 = 14.3%. The Hurricanes outshot the Royals 31-30.
The Royals will conclude a five-game road trip in Edmonton on Tuesday night which will mark the club’s last game before the Christmas break. The puck is scheduled to drop at 6:00 p.m. Pacific Time on Tuesday. Victoria’s next home game goes at Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre on December 27th when the Prince George Cougars visit Vancouver Island for a two-game set.
Give the gift of hockey this holiday season by purchasing a Royals Holiday Combo or an Island Savings Kids Club membership! The Holiday Combo, available for $60, includes four anytime ticket vouchers and a gift. Kids Club memberships, for fans 12 years and younger, are available for only $20 and include four child tickets, a t-shirt, newsletters from Marty the Marmot and much more!