Sunday, February 12, 2017

Rockets vs.T-Birds preview

Shoot the Breeze Photo
Tonight’s Preview: The Kelowna Rockets open a four game home stand this afternoon against the visiting Seattle Thunderbirds. This is the third of four meetings this season. The Rockets are 2-0-0-0 in the seasonal series after a 5-1 win in Seattle (October 22nd) and a 6-1 victory (December 7th) at Prospera Place. The two teams close out the four game series February 25th at ShoWare Center. The Rockets host Spokane Friday night and the Prince George Cougars on Saturday. The home stand ends Wednesday February 22nd against the Edmonton Oil Kings. The Rockets have won 5 or their last 6 games and are coming off back-to-back shutouts Friday and Saturday night over the Vancouver Giants.

What just happened? Brodan Salmond made 19 saves for his second consecutive shutout in a 5-0 win Saturday night against the Vancouver Giants. Dillon Dube was named the first star with three assists while Erik Gardiner, Kole Lind, Calvin Thurkauf, Lucas Johansen and James Hilsendager scored in the teams’ 32nd win of the season. The Rockets were 2 for 4 on the power play and failed to surrender a power play goal against in both games against the G-Men.

That’s a Fact Jack: Brodan Salmond’s back-to-back shutouts are the first for a Rockets goalie since Jackson Whistle had two in a row in the 2015 WHL playoffs vs. Tri City.  Adam Brown had back-to-back shutouts during the regular season against the Chlliwack Bruins in October of 2008…Nolan Foote became the youngest player in franchise history to score three goals in a game. Foote accomplished the feat Friday against the 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 Giants Friday night were a season high. The previous season high was 47 in a 5-1 loss in Kamloops on December 28th…The Rockets have lost the same number of games (20) as they did all of last seasonReid Gardiner has 14 points (6+8=14) in 12 games as a member of the Kelowna Rockets...The Kelowna Rockets have 16 games left in the regular season. Of those 16, 9 of them are against BC Division rivals. The Rockets have three more games against Vancouver, two more vs. Prince George and one more against the Kamloops Blazers and Victoria Royals. The team has two more each against US Division Everett, Seattle and Spokane and a single against Tri City. Edmonton is the only Central Division team they face down the stretch…The Rockets have generated 30 or more shots in 16 of their last 17 gamesThe Rockets have been shorthanded the most times in the entire Canadian Hockey League. The team has been shorthanded 297 times…The Rockets have surrendered 5 or more goals 11 times this season. The teams’ record, not surprisingly, is 0-10-1-0.

Hot as a pistol: Calvin Thurkauf has points in 12 of his last 14 games. Thurkauf has 8+10=18 over that stretch. Kole Lind has points in 8 of his last 10 with 6+11=17 over that period. Nick Merkley has points in 6 of his last 8 games with 5+8=13 over that span. Cal Foote has points in 7 of his last 9 games with 1+7=8. Reid Gardiner has points in 6 of his last 7 games with 4+5=9 over that stretch….Erik Gardiner has goals in back-to-back games…..

Broadcasters Bits: Rookie defenceman Conrad Belcourt earned his first career point, an assist, on Leif Mattson’s third period goal Friday night….Nolan Foote’s three goal game isn’t the first by a Rockets rookie this season. Kyle Topping had three goals in a game in Seattle October 22nd …Calvin Thurkauf and Devante Stephens also have three goal games this season….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 11 losses (regulation or overtime loss) the opposition has opened the scoring….The Rockets are 8-5-1-0 since the trade deadline….The Rockets have scored 10 shorthanded goals this season, the same number as 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 13-12-0-0 against BC based teams this seasonMichael Herringer has started in 35 of the last 46 games…The Rockets are 8-2-2-0 against U.S Division teams this season.

Game Notes Compiled by Regan Bartel of AM 1150

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