Royals drop Blades


by Corey St. Laurent

February 22, 2014, Saskatoon SK (ISN) – The Victoria Royals visited the Saskatoon Blades at Credit Union Centre on Saturday night to wrap up a five-game Eastern Conference road trip. Victoria was looking for their fourth win of the trip and gave Patrik Polivka the start in net, while the Blades looked to Alex Moodie.

Victoria opened the scoring just 32 seconds into the game. On a two-on-one rush down the left wing, forward Austin Carroll slipped a pass over to Logan Nelson who made a nifty deke to his backhand for an early 1-0 advantage.

Victoria added to their lead 31 seconds later when Taylor Crunk pounced on a loose puck to the right of Moodie and fired it short side past the Blades’ goaltender. Saskatoon cut the deficit in half at the 18:04 mark when Ryan Graham trickled one past the left arm of Polivka. With the period almost at a close, the Royals struck for the third time with one second remaining on the clock. Brandon Magee raced the puck down the right wing and centered a pass for defenceman Brett Cote who slotted a shot to the top right corner as the buzzer sounded. After 20 minutes of play, Victoria led 3-1.

Saskatoon made it a one-goal game 3:24 into the second period when Brett Stovin slid one past the left leg of Polivka on a powerplay. The Royals responded with a powerplay goal of their own 8:47 into the frame. Axel Blomqvist stationed himself in front of Moodie and banged home a rebound to make it a 4-2 game. Victoria’s Ben Walker then struck for his 24th goal of the season after he received a pass from Magee and snapped a shot past the Blades’ netminder at 13:17. Magee picked up his third assist of the game on the Walker tally and the Royals headed into the second intermission leading by a 5-2 score.

Saskatoon made a goaltending change to start the third frame as Troy Trombley relieved Moodie of his duties for the evening. Logan Nelson solved Trombley 9:12 into the period with his second goal of the game as he crashed the net and pushed his 22nd over the goal line. The Blades responded 1:30 later when Nikita Sherbak squeezed one through the legs of Polivka to make it a 6-3 game. That was as close as Saskatoon would come on the night as the Royals finished a five-game Eastern Conference road trip with a win and a 4-1-0-0 record while also extending their impressive road record to 23-7-0-1 this season. Victoria 6 Saskatoon 3.

Victoria went 1/4=25.0% on the powerplay, while Saskatoon went 1/3=33.3%. The Royals outshot the Blades 40-20.

The Royals will now return to the Island, but head up to Prince George to take on the Cougars next Friday and Saturday. The Royals’ next home game will take place March 7th at Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre when they host the Kamloops Blazers for Save-On-Foods Night! Puck drop is set for 7:05 p.m.

Royals 2014-15 season tickets are on sale now! Take advantage of our special early bird offer! Receive complimentary tickets for all remaining 2013-14 home games when you place your deposit on season tickets for next season. Current season ticket holders are also eligible for over $6,000 in prizes when they renew their seats before March 14th! Guarantee the BEST seats at the BEST prices with the BEST benefits for all 36 home games by visiting or calling 250-220-7889.