Kelowna, BC- The Victoria Royals rallied from a 5-1 deficit, but it wasn’t enough as they fell to the Kelowna Rockets 6-5 on Saturday night at Prospera Place.
Victoria went with a mixture of nine rookies and 11 veterans in their line-up. Kelowna countered with 13 veterans and seven rookies.
The Royals trailed 5-1 mid-way through the second period after four consecutive goals by the Rockets. Victoria’s Matthew Phillips scored in the second period, before Dante Hannoun and rookie Eric Florchuk tallied in the third to make it a 5-4 game. Kelowna’s Kole Lind restored the home team’s two goal lead with an empty net marker late in the game. Royals’ rookie Arjun Atwal would score with the goalie pulled and 19 seconds remaining, but the visitors were unable to find the tying goal. Victoria’s first marker was scored by Blake Bargar. The Rockets’ Calvin Thurkauf and Jake Kryski each scored two goals, while Ted Brennan tallied the other marker.
Victoria’s rookie goaltender Dylan Myskiw was in goal for the first and second periods and stopped 20 of the 25 shots directed at him. The Royals opted for Griffen Outhouse in the third frame and he stopped all nine shots he faced. Netminders Brodan Salmond and James Porter combined for 35 saves on 40 shots for Kelowna.
The Royals were 2/7=28.6% on the man-advantage, while the Rockets were 2/3=66.7%.
Victoria scratched 20-year-olds Ryan Gagnon and Jack Walker along with veterans Chaz Reddekopp, Tyler Soy, Marsel Ibragimov, Keith Anderson, Ryan Peckford and rookies Dean McNabb and Kaid Oliver.
The Royals will wrap-up their three games in three days road trip tomorrow afternoon in Everett. Victoria will play the Tri-City Americans at 3:00 p.m. as part of the Silvertips Annual Pre-Season Classic.
The Royals’ lone home game this preseason is next Saturday on September 10th against the Vancouver Giants. Puck drop is scheduled for 2:00 p.m.