The Kelowna Rockets prepare to head to Kamloops for game three of the first round of the 2017 WHL Playoffs on Tuesday night followed by game four on Wednesday night.
For the Rockets the Sandman Centre in Kamloops has been one of the tougher buildings to play in this season. Having to head out there on five separate occasions throughout the regular season, Kelowna collected only one win. That win however, was the most recent game between the two in Kamloops, on February 24th, when the Rockets lit up for eight goals in a commanding 8-2 victory. Head Coach Jason Smith says the difference between that visit and the rest of them, was how his team started the game.
“Playing a complete game was the starting point. Earlier in the year when we’d play out there we had some decent starts to the game but we started getting away from our structure and discipline, and not playing a team game,” said Smith. “We had a tendency to start doing individual things or taking undisciplined penalties. We didn’t do on that last trip to Kamloops.”
The Rockets currently hold a 2-0 series lead after taking the first two games in Kelowna.
The series so far:
Game one: Kelowna outshot Kamloops 48-15 en route to a 4-0 victory led by power forward Carsen Twarynski who notched two goals in the effort to open up the first round of the 2017 WHL Playoffs.
Game two: Kelowna held a 1-0 lead for much of the game thanks to some goaltending heroics by Michael Herringer until Dillon Dube potted a shorthanded goal, followed by a power play goal. Dube got the Rockets up 3-0 but Kamloops didn’t give up. The Blazers stormed back with two late goals to draw within one but Herringer and the Rockets held on for a 3-2 victory.
Game three is set for tomorrow night at 7:00pm at the Sandman Centre in Kamloops.
Game four goes on Wednesday night in Kamloops at the same time.
If it becomes necessary game five will be on Friday, March 31st in Kelowna.