|Shoot the Breeze Photography|
Tonight’s Preview: The Kelowna Rockets face-off against the Victoria Royals for the first time since last year’s epic Western Conference semi-final series. It was decided in seven games with Justin Kirkland scoring the tying goal with .2 seconds left in regulation time before Calvin Thurkauf ended the Royals season with the game winner in overtime. These two teams are meeting eight times this season. The Rockets make two visits to the Island on November 20th and 22nd and again on January 11th and 13th. The Rockets were 3-5-0-0 in eight meetings a season ago including just 1-3-0-0 at Prospera Place. The Royals out-scored the Rockets 27-21 overall. The Rockets are coming off a 5-1 win Saturday night in Seattle. Kyle Topping had three goals while rookie Jack Cowell scored his first career WHL goal. Kole Lind added his team leading 5th of the season. The Rockets have won three straight games, with wins over Everett (4-3 OT), Tri City (4-2) and Seattle (5-1). The Rockets travel to Portland for two games this weekend.
Hurrah for ‘Herry’: Veteran 20 year-old Michael Herringer is the WHL Goaltender of the Week. Herringer went 3-0-0-0 last week, posting a goals against average of 1.99. Herringer is the WHL nominee for CHL Goaltender of the Week.
Hockey Canada Calls: Three members of the Kelowna Rockets will represent the WHL and Hockey Canada, at the CHL Canada-Russia series. Team WHL, who’s roster consists of Nick Merkley, Dillon Dube and Cal Foote, will compete against the Russian Selects in games November 7th in Prince George and November 8th in Edmonton. The Rockets
Milestone Makers: Jordan Borstmayer is one point shy of his career high 5 points set last season…Kole Lind has points in three straight games (1+3=4)…Nick Merkley has played 190 WHL regular season games….Jake Kryski is 3 games shy of 150 games in his career…16 year-old Nolan Foote has points in three straight games (2+1=3)....Nick Merkley is one point shy of 200 for his WHL career…Devante Stephens is three games shy of 150.
Broadcasters Bits: The Rockets have opened the scoring in three straight games….The Rockets have carried the lead into the third period in three straight games…..The Rockets have not allowed a power play goal against in their last two games (9 for 9)…The team reduced its roster earlier this month by releasing 19 year-old forward Tate Coughlin. Originally listed by the team, Coughlin played 107 games with the Rockets…Sixteen year-old Nolan Foote won’t play in tonight’s game. Foote is one of 66 players participating in the 2016 Under-17 Hockey Challenge in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario October 27th to November 5th. Assistant Travis Crickard is a video coach for Team Canada at the event…The Rockets lead the WHL in penalty minutes with 252….The Rockets have been shorthanded a league high 76 times….Nine members of the Rockets participated in NHL training camps. Tomas Soustal and Gordie Ballhorn earned tryouts with Edmonton and Dallas respectively. Nick Merkley (Arizona), Lucas Johansen (Washington), Dillon Dube (Calgary), Devante Stephens (Buffalo), Calvin Thurkauf (Columbus), Braydyn Chizen (Minnesota) and Justin Kirkland (Nashville) are all drafted players… A rare trade between the Kelowna Rockets and Spokane Chiefs was consummated October 17th. The Rockets traded 19 year-old Tanner Wishnowski to the Chiefs for 16 year-old prospect Colum McGauley. McGauley, a 4th round pick of the Chiefs, is playing this season with the Nelson Leafs.
Three Identified by NHLCS: Three members of the Kelowna Rockets have been named to NHL Central Scouting’s ‘Player’s to Watch List’. Defenceman Cal Foote is an ‘A’ prospect. Kole Lind is a ‘B’ prospect while defenceman Jonathan Smart is a ‘C’ prospect. The NHL draft is this June in Chicago.
Player total: 23
Year by Year Breakdown:
20’s – 3 Stadel, Herringer, Southam
19’s – 6 Johansen, Merkley, Soustal, Stephens, Ballhorn
18’s – 7 Dube, Kryski, Lind, Borstmayer, Chizen, Salmond, Thurkauf
17’s - 6 C. Foote, Topping, Bruggen-Cate, Cowell, Smart, Mattson
16’s – 2 N. Foote, Belcourt
Game Notes Compiled by Regan Bartel of AM 1150