A three goal third period lifted the Kelowna Rockets to a 5-2 win Wednesday night over the visiting Lethbridge Hurricanes. Shane McColgan's goal at the 2:09 mark of the third period broke a 2-2 tie as the Rockets snapped a two game losing streak while winning for the 12th time this season. The loss snapped the Hurricanes four game winning streak.
McColgan's goal was his first in ten games. McColgan, twice, went ten games without a goal last season. The most interesting component of McColgan's goal was it was his first game winner of the season.
McColgan, Carter Rigby and Colton Sissons scored goals in the third period with Sissons' empty netter being the most impressive. What, an empty net goal impressive? This one was. Sissons was attempting to out race a Hurricane defenceman just inside the blue line and dove to knock the puck towards the net as both players fell to the ice. Sissons missed, but while sliding, went to his knees and back handed the puck towards the net for his 15th goal of the season. Not giving up on the play was the key in one of the best empty goals I've ever seen at Prospera Place.
Brett Bulmer was at his best. The 19 year-old was dangerous with the puck and created some good things on the power play and even strength. He is such a good player when he puts his mind to it. I can't comment on his defensive play, but his efforts in the offensive zone showed why he is heading to Team Canada's training camp this weekend.
Defenceman Damon Severson found the score sheet with a nice shot in the second period to give the Rockets a 2-1 lead. It was Severson's first goal in 13 games. He looked relieved after scoring the goal. He clearly has the best shot on the team from the point. That is why scouts like him. This goal came from a sharp angle near the right face-off circle.
Tyrell Goulbourne has a strong chin, and not just for taking punches. Hurricanes d-man Daniel Johnstone escaped with a two minute roughing penalty after clearly hitting Goulbourne in the side of the jaw with what is now called 'a hit to the head'. It is this type of hit that should result in a five minute major and game misconduct but the officiating staff somehow missed it.
Goulbourne was on the ice for a few minutes before making his way to the Rockets bench. He later stepped in to fight forward Nick Bounassissi, who challenged Shane McColgan, after a clean hit at the Hurricane blue line. Bounassissi had no interest in engaging with Goulbourne and skated away.
Don't be fooled into thinking Rockets goaltender Adam Brown didn't have a good game in goal. In a scoreless tie, Brown made a nice right pad save in the first period on a one timer from the slot. It may have been his best save of the game.
Damian Ketlo allowed four goals in the loss but the 20 year-old made some nice saves. If Ketlo continues to be that steady force and his teammates maintain that worth ethic, the Hurricanes are going to win some games.
Head Coach Ryan Huska was behind the bench for the final game before heading off to Calgary on Friday to assume his role as an assistant to Don Hay on the Canadian World Junior Team.
Brett Bulmer will play Friday in Swift Current before attempting to crack the Team Canada roster and become the 12th Kelowna Rockets player to wear Canadian colours at Christmas.