Saturday, October 31, 2009

Daylight savings time disappointment

  • Daylight savings time takes affect Saturday at midnight allowing BC resident the chance to obtain an extra hour of sleep. On Friday night it looked like the Kelowna Rockets needed the extra shut-eye in a 4-3 loss to the Spokane Chiefs. The Rockets got exactly what they deserved in this one. For the first time this season the team was flat for the majority of the game, and had it not been for goaltender Adam Brown, the score could have been much worse than just a one goal loss.
  • The Rockets came out with no drive, no emotion in the opening period. They were unwilling to clear pucks with authority, initiate body contact or win battles to loose pucks. Spokane forward Mitch Wahl had three glorious chances in the first period to open up the scoring but was denied by the best player on the ice for the Rockets - Adam Brown.
  • Kyle Beach had another strong game against the Rockets. The 19 year-old scored twice and added an assist and played a smart game. Rockets forward Curt Gogol attempted to engage Beach into a third period fight on a Spokane power play, which Beach thought about, and then smartly skated away.
  • I am not sure what type of teammate Kyle Beach is, but you can't argue with his production on the ice. He has too much skill not to be a threat and only compliments what the Chiefs already have. With the return of overage d-man Jared Spurgeon, that Chief power play will be deadly.
  • Spokane's better players were indeed better than the Rockets top end players on this night. Despite Mitch Wahl's struggles to score, he was solid in his own zone and was great on the penalty kill. The same can't be said for Rockets leading scorer Stepan Novotny, who was benched by the coaching staff for his uninspired play. While I am singling out Novotny, Lucas Bloodoff was equally as ineffective. If the older players aren't willing to work, what message does that send the younger players?
  • While I was disappointed with the work ethic Friday night, it likely marks the first time this season the team didn't come out and truly compete. Overall through 16 games the Rockets can't be faulted for sluggish play. But if this team buys into the theory that they can put in a half-hearted effort and win, they are sadly mistaken.
  • Tyson Barrie had two goals in the game, giving him 9 points in four games since returning from a knee injury in the third game of the season against Kamloops.
  • Rookie Shane McColgan is now tied with Stepan Novotny for the team lead in points with 21. McColgan had two assists and was a +3. McColgan has registered a point in all but three games this season.
  • Brandon McMillan returned to the Rockets lineup after missing 6 games with a broken bone in his foot. McMillan was held off the score-sheet for the first time this season. While he was able to contribute, he was obviously not 100%. You could tell he just didn't have that breakaway speed that he is known for.
  • Rookie MacKenzie Johnston earned his first WHL point, an assist in the third period.

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