|Shoot the Breeze Photography|
Tonight’s Preview: The Kelowna Rockets open the weekend playing three games in three nights. The team faces the Kamloops Blazers for the 10th and final time this season. The Rockets are 3-6-0-0 in the seasonal series and are 0-4-0-0 at Sandman Centre this season. The Rockets have scored four goals in four visits to Kamloops. They have lost by scores of 6-0 (Feb 8th), 3-1 (Jan 6th), 5-1 (Dec 28th) and 9-2 (Sept 23rd). If the playoffs were to begin tonight, these two teams would meet in the opening round with the Blazers holding home ice advantage. The Rockets were a 10-1 winner over the Edmonton Oil Kings Wednesday night, helping the team to its 8th win in the last 10 games (8-1-1-0) while earning a point in 6 straight (5-0-1-0). Following tonight’s game, the Rockets play in Seattle (Saturday) and in Spokane (Sunday). The Rockets have scored 36 goals in their last 6 games (6.0 per game).
What just happened? The Rockets scored a season high 10 goals in a 10-1 win Wednesday night over the visiting Edmonton Oil Kings. Rodney Southam scored three times and added an assist in the win. It was Southam’s second career hat trick. The 20 year-old had a three goal game against Kamloops in last year’s playoffs. James Hilsendager had four assists as the Rockets went 3 for 4 on the power play while out-shooting the Oil Kings 53-15. Brodan Salmond earned the win in goal.
Better with age: Kole Lind has 27+45=72 so far this season. That is 31 points more than the 41 he put up this season….Devante Stephens has 10+18=28 this season. That is 17 more points than in a disappointing sophomore campaign. Stephens is a career +51. Only Nick Merkley has a better career +/- with a +79 rating.
That’s a fact Jack: Nick Merkley (2+4=6) and Rodney Southam (0+6=6) lead the Rockets in scoring against the Blazers. Rudolfs Balcers has scored 8 goals in 7 games against the Rockets …Calvin Thurkauf earned his 100th career point Wednesday night with an assist …The Rockets have lost their last 4 overtime games…Brodan Salmond was named the WHL and CHL Goaltender of the Week ending February 12th after back-to-back shutouts against the Vancouver Giants.…Nolan Foote became the youngest player in franchise history to score three goals in a game. Foote accomplished the feat February 10th against the Vancouver Giants, scoring those three goals at the tender age of 16 years, 2 months and 12 days. The old mark was set by Shane McColgan who scored a hat trick at 16 years, 11 months and 9 days… The 56 shots the Rockets put up against the Vancouver Giants February 10th were a season high….The 15 shots the team surrendered February 22nd against the Edmonton Oil Kings was a season low...The Rockets have lost the same number of games (20) as they did all of last season…Reid Gardiner has 19 points (7+12=19) in 16 games as a member of the Kelowna Rockets.…The Rockets have generated 30 or more shots in 20 of their last 21 games…The Rockets have surrendered 5 or more goals 12 times this season. The teams’ record, not surprisingly, is 0-10-2-0.
Hot as a pistol: Calvin Thurkauf has points in 16 of his last 18 games. Thurkauf has 13+11=24 over that stretch. Kole Lind has points in 11 of his last 14 with 7+13=20 over that period. Nick Merkley has points in 10 of his last 12 games with 9+12=21 over that span. Cal Foote has points in 9 of his last 13 games with 1+9=10. Reid Gardiner has points in 10 of his last 11 games with 5+9=14 over that stretch.
Broadcasters Bits: Kole Lind was the WHL Player of the Week ending February 9th. Lind had 3+5=8 in three games to earn the honour…In the Rockets last 12 losses (regulation or overtime loss) the opposition has opened the scoring…The Rockets are 11-5-2-0 since the trade deadline….The Rockets have scored 11 shorthanded goals this season, one more than all of last season…..GM Bruce Hamilton has traded/released six players from the teams opening day roster…Kole Lind had his 13 game point streak snapped December 18th against the Edmonton Oil Kings. It is the longest point streak by a Rockets player this season …Calvin Thurkauf was named the WHL Player of the Week December 7th to 11th …The Rockets were 8-3-2-0 in December...The Rockets were 6-4-0-0 in 10 games in November after going 8-4-0-0 in 12 games in October…The Rockets are the only team in the WHL that has failed to surrender a shorthanded goal against this season…The Rockets are 14-12-0-0 against BC based teams this season…Michael Herringer has started in 38 of the last 50 games…The Rockets are 9-2-3-0 against U.S Division teams this season.
Game Notes Compiled by Regan Bartel of AM 1150