Prince George, BC- The Victoria Royals defeated the Prince George Cougars 4-3 in a back-and-forth affair, in the second of a two game set on Saturday night at the CN Centre.
Royals’ rookie Matthew Phillips tallied his seventh game-winning goal of the season on the powerplay to break a 3-3 tie seven minutes into the third period. Prince George’s Jansen Harkins scored late in the middle frame to give the homeside a 3-2 lead, only to have Victoria’s Tyler Soy erase it 42 seconds later when he registered his second marker of the night. Victoria opened the game’s scoring with goals from Soy and Dante Hannoun in the first period. The Cougars’ other markers were tallied by Jared Bethune and Jesse Gabrielle.
With an assist on the game winning goal, the Royals’ Joe Hicketts surpassed former Chilliwack Bruin Brandon Manning for the most powerplay assists by a defenceman in franchise history with 58.
Victoria rookie goaltender Griffen Outhouse, who made his fourth consecutive start, turned away 29 of the 32 shots directed his way. Prince George netminder Ty Edmonds turned aside 31 of the 35 shots he faced.
The Royals went 2/3=66.7% on the man-advantage, while the Cougars were 1/2=50.0% on the night.
Victoria returns home on Friday, January 15th to begin a six-game homestand against the WHL leading Kelowna Rockets with puck drop slated for 7:05 p.m.