Thursday, December 1, 2016

Impressive on ice while executing trade off it

Jonathan Smart - Shoot the Breeze Photography
  • Was it the Kelowna Rockets most complete road game of the season? If not, darn close. Tomas Soustal and Kole Lind each with a goal and an assist in a 4-1 win Wednesday night at the Toyota Center against the Tri City Americans. The Rockets discipline was as sharp as it's overall play as the team put together back-to-back solid efforts after an impressive 3-2 overtime win Saturday against the Regina Pats. The team took only three minor penalties, all in the third period, limiting the WHL's third best power play to only three chances with the extra man. Outside of a short flurry in the first period, the Rockets were clearly the better team 5 on 5. Kole Lind, Nolan Foote and Jordan Borstmayer added singles in the teams 15th win of the season. The Rockets are in Spokane Friday night.
  • The shot clock was a good indicator of exactly how well the Rockets played. It was the greatest margin for the season as the Rockets fired 45 shots on net while surrendering only 21 against. Michael Herringer's best save came against Americans leading point producer Michael Rasmussen on a third period power play. The 17 year-old first round prospect has been held off the score-sheet in two games against the Rockets this season.  
  • Jake Kryski fighting? Yep. The 18 year-old found himself trading punches with Americans Brendan O'Reilly. I liked it. Kryski doesn't fight. It may have been his first tilt in the WHL and it showed something about his character. It showed that he plays with emotional and intensity, which isn't often evident in his body language on the ice. The fight was an encouraging sign for a player who often finds himself in ideal scoring areas but just can't finish. By my count, Kryski had three good scoring chances last night  but came away empty handed.   
  • Kole Lind has scored a goal in five straight games. The second year forwards 14th goal of the season matches his total from all of last season. 
  • Tomas Soustal, the games first star, had a goal and an assist and is now riding a 9 game point streak.
  • This won't be a popular opinion with WHL referee haters, but I thought the game was called exceptionally well by Jason Nissen and Mike Campbell. Both officials kept their whistles in their pockets and didn't make one soft call. Not one. They stayed out of it and the game took a quick 2 hours and 9 minutes to play. 
  • Jordan Borstmayer's goal was his first in 20 games. The second year forward has three goals this season, the exact same total in 61 games in his rookie campaign. 
  • The Rockets announce a trade with the Regina Pats late in the first period of last night's game. The team sent 17 year-old defenceman Jonathan Smart to the Pats for 17 year-old prospect Erik Gardiner and 19 year-old defenceman James Hilsendager. Smart was the Rockets first round bantam pick in 2014 while Gardiner was the Pats second round pick that same year. Gardiner is the younger brother of former PA Raiders sniper Reid Gardiner and was a Saskatchewan Midget Hockey League first team all-star with the Prince Albert Mintos last season. Hilsendager was the Pats 9th round bantam pick in 2012. The Lloydminster resident is expected to make his Kelowna Rockets debut Friday in Spokane.
  • Dan Marr, the director of NHL Central Scouting took in last night's game in Tri City.    


Caleb Aldinger said...

I would like to say that the Americans played exceptionally poor in just about every aspect of the game. Passing, positioning, LINE CHANGES, and so on. Throw that on top of great play by your Rockets... and I'm not sure how it wasn't 7-0 or 10-1.

The line changes alone, by Kelowna, were crisp and extremely well timed. Probably creating scoring chances by themselves.

Regan Bartel said...

Appreciate you leaving a message and your perspective on the game.