Thursday, February 28, 2013

McKinlay having career year

  • Dylen McKinlay is having a career season and the Kelowna Rockets couldn't be happier. The twenty year-old scored his 22nd and 23rd goals of the season helping the Rockets to a 4-1 win Thursday night over the visiting Seattle Thunderbirds. McKinlay scored once shorthanded, his league leading (Adam Lowry of the SC Broncos also has 6) sixth shorthanded goal of the season, helping his team move 7 points up on Kamloops for first place in the BC Division. McKinlay leads the team in shorthanded goals, games played and plus minus with a whopping +51. Not bad for an overage player that was acquired from the Kootenay Ice prior to the start of the season. 
  • McKinlay was the Rockets best forward and was full marks for being named the first star. Overall it was a rough outing for the home team who seemed to struggle for the majority of the night despite scoring the opening goal - from McKinlay - less than 30 seconds into the game. The T-Birds deserve credit for playing hard, but I thought the Rockets were just good enough to win.
  • Jordon Cooke made only 17 saves but I thought he was sharp when his team wasn't. The 19 year-old goaltender made solid stops against a Seattle team that struggled mightily to find the back of the net. Cooke's best stop came against T-Birds Roberts Lipsbergs with a nice right pad save in the third period when the Rockets had a slim 3-1 lead.
  • The T-Birds power play is partially to blame for the loss. They had ideal chances to make it a one goal game with Damon Severson and Tyson Baillie taking penalties less than four minutes apart. Not only did Seattle fail to capitalize, but they had few good looks on either opportunity. The Rockets penalty killing unit was rock solid on four all kills.
  • T-Birds d-man Jesse Forsberg left the game in the second period after he was hit with what may have been a high stick from Rockets forward Rourke Chartier. Forsberg was on the power play at the time. Chartier's stick seemed to clip Forsberg in the head or face. The 19 year-old fell to the ice, and with no penalty on the play, Dylen McKinlay went down and scored a shorthanded goal to make it 2-0.     
  • The Rockets end the month with 7 wins in 12 games. It marked the first time this season the team went through a month losing five times.
  • The Rockets end the regular season against U.S based team going 12-8-0-0 in 20 games.
  • Myles Bell was the leading point producer in February with 6+11=17. Colton Sissons was 7+8=15 whle Dylen McKinlay had 5+6=11.
  • The Rockets are 7-0-0-0 in Thursday games and have allowed just 6 goals against in those seven Thursday games.
  • The Rockets have 26 wins on home ice this season, one win better than Portland (25) and Edmonton (25). 
  • The Rockets have 13 shorthanded goals, one fewer than league leading Spokane (14).
  • The Rockets have been shorthanded 300 times this season, second most in the league to only Saskatoon. (302).
  • Up next? Lethbridge visits Saturday night.


Jared Comeau said...

Rockets magic number is 10! I think that is more than doable.

Regan Bartel said...

That is wrong.

Jared Comeau said...

By 10 I meant 5, my mistake HAHA.