The Victoria Royals visit the Kelowna Rockets Tuesday night for Game 3 of the best of seven playoff, leading the series 2-0.
“Last change, match ups, and guys willing to to whatever it takes to win.” said Head Coach Dave Lowry about the challenge facing his club on the road.
Radio: 91.3 FM Victoria
The Royals won a pair of home games by 2-1 and 3-2 scores on Thursday and Saturday respectively, both without the services of Joe Hicketts and Vladimir Bobylev.
Coleman Vollrath earned the wins, while Michael Herringer suffered the losses. The Rockets outshot the Royals both nights by margins of 41-31, and 28-26.
Victoria’s power play is 2 for 8 in the series, Kelowna 1 for 8.
The Royals scored first in both contests.
“It’s exactly what we expected them to be, hard fought, playoff hockey games…” said Lowry on the first two meetings,
“You have two evenly matched teams, similar records, had very good years. We expect close games and a long fought series.”
Jack Walker (2g 1a) and Alex Forsberg (1g 2a) collected 3 points each in the first two games for the home team.
Tyson Baillie (2g 1a) led the way for the Rockets with 3 points. Baillie had a third period tying goal in Game 2 waived off, as it was deemed ‘Kicking Motion.’
The following excerpts are from columnist Larry Fisher of the Kelowna Daily Courier:
“I haven’t saw the video yet, but based on what I saw during the game, yeah I think it was a terrible call,” said Rockets head coach Brad Ralph. “It’s got to be a distinct kicking motion, and I didn’t see a distinct kicking motion by any means.”
In further discussing the controversial decision, Ralph noted: “You can angle it, you can redirect the puck in.”
It looked unintentional on television replays, but the video goal judge in the building felt there was conclusive evidence to take the goal away.
“We’re looking to win this series, so that goal they called back, that’ll stay fresh in our minds,” said Ralph. “We’ll use that as motivation. . . .We’ve got to come back and win a game on Tuesday, that’s just where we’re at.”
“It’s pretty fortunate with the way the games went, really close and we caught a bounce at the end of the last one,” admitted Royals forward Alex Forsberg. “Give them credit, they played their hearts out, and we’re really fortunate to be up 2-0.”
“I’m happy it went our way but, in that position, we’d probably be pretty mad too,” said Forsberg.
Not so much from Victoria head coach Dave Lowry.
“I’ve seen the replay and I agree with the call,” Lowry said without hesitation. “I don’t know if everyone has the same feeds and angles that they have. They had enough evidence to rule it to be a distinct kicking motion, hence no goal.
“For us, that’s one call that went our way and, reality is, we’ve had numerous calls that haven’t gone our way,” added Lowry, alluding specifically to a Tyler Soy goal that was negated in the third period of last Thursday’s opener, which would have extended the Royals’ lead to 3-1, though they held on to win 2-1.
“We had a call go against us in Game 1 and they had a call go against them in Game 2,” he continued. “There’s video replay in place for a reason, and that’s to make sure they get the calls right. That’s what we ask for, and that’s what you hope for . . . and what you have to do is you have to find a way to push forward.”
Lowry did agree with Forsberg on another front.
“We feel fortunate right now that we are in this position,” he said of sweeping the first two games at home before heading out on the road. “They were exactly what we expected them to be, hard-fought games and very close, tight-checking.”
During the regular season Victoria won 3 of 4 meetings in Kelowna. The Royals had the most road wins overall with 24. The Rockets had the 3rd most home wins with 27.
Game 4 goes Thursday in Kelowna.
Thursday, April 7th – Kelowna 1 @ Victoria 2
Saturday, April 9th – Kelowna 2 @ Victoria 3
Tuesday, April 12th – Victoria @ Kelowna – 7:05 p.m.
Thursday, April 14th – Victoria @ Kelowna – 7:05 p.m.
Friday, April 15th – Kelowna @ Victoria – 7:05 p.m. (if necessary)
Sunday, April 17th – Victoria @ Kelowna – 5:00 p.m. (if necessary)
Tuesday, April 19th – Kelowna @ Victoria – 7:05 p.m. (if necessary)
– Marlon Martens
How the 2 teams match up
|Team Record||4-5-0-0 — 8 points||6-2-0-0 — 12 points|
|Division Ranking||2nd B.C.||1st B.C.|
|Conference Ranking||4th Western||1st Western|
|Past 10 Games||4-5-0-0||6-2-0-0|
|Last Game||3-2 L @ Victoria (Apr 9 2016) Final||3-2 W vs Kelowna (Apr 9 2016) Final|
|PP (Overall)||(3/34) 8.8%||(8/33) 24.2%|
|PP (Home)||(2/17) 11.8%||(3/17) 17.6%|
|PP (Away)||(1/17) 5.9%||(5/16) 31.3%|
|PK (Overall)||(8/40) 80.0%||(6/29) 79.3%|
|PK (Home)||(4/19) 78.9%||(3/16) 81.3%|
|PK (Away)||(4/21) 81.0%||(3/13) 76.9%|
|PP vs. Opp.||(1/8) 12.5%||(2/8) 25%|
|PK vs. Opp.||(2/8) 75%||(1/8) 87.5%|
|Leading Rookie||Thurkauf (1-2-3)||Walford (2-4-6)|
|Most PIM||Soustal – 13||Gagnon – 15|
|Leading Scorers||Soustal (3-3-6)||Walker (7-5-12)|
|Baillie (2-4-6)||Soy (5-5-10)|
|Kirkland (3-2-5)||Forsberg (3-5-8)|
|Chartier (2-3-5)||Bobylev (0-7-7)|
|Southam (4-0-4)||Walford (2-4-6)|
|Last 5 Games||3-2 L @ Victoria (Apr 9 2016) Final||3-2 W vs Kelowna (Apr 9 2016) Final|
|2-1 L @ Victoria (Apr 7 2016) Final||2-1 W vs Kelowna (Apr 7 2016) Final|
|2-1 W vs Kamloops (Apr 4 2016) Final OT||6-2 W @ Spokane (Apr 3 2016) Final|
|4-0 L @ Kamloops (Apr 2 2016) Final||4-1 L vs Spokane (Apr 1 2016) Final|
|4-0 W vs Kamloops (Apr 1 2016) Final||3-2 W @ Spokane (Mar 30 2016) Final OT|
|Leading After 1st||3-0-0-0||4-0-0-0|
|Leading After 2nd||3-1-0-0||5-0-0-0|
|Tied After 1st||1-2-0-0||2-0-0-0|
|Tied After 2nd||1-0-0-0||1-0-0-0|
|Trailing After 1st||0-3-0-0||0-2-0-0|
|Trailing After 2nd||0-4-0-0||0-2-0-0|
|Out Shooting Opponents||2-2-0-0||1-1-0-0|
|Out Shot by Opponents||2-1-0-0||5-1-0-0|