Royals’ weekend preview: Kootenay Ice, Nov. 19

Guess who's is tied with feisty Tim Traber for the lead in penalty minutes ....

Josh Cowen of the Red Deer Rebels

Josh Cowen of the Red Deer Rebels

The Victoria Royals are back in action Friday in Vancouver against the Giants.

On Saturday the Royals host the Kootenay Ice for the first time ever at Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre.

Game time is 7:05 p.m.

The reigning WHL champion Ice (13-5) are currently fifth in the Eastern Conference.

Based out of Cranbrook, the team boasts a couple of names with NHL pedigree, Max and Sam Reinhart. Max, a Calgary Flames draft pick, is the eldest and Sam the youngest sons of ex-Vancouver Canucks defenceman Paul Reinhart. Both are forwards while middle brother Griffin is a defenceman with the Edmonton Oil Kings.

Royal ramblings:

  • If you missed it … this is possibly the Royals’ best fight of the year so far, courtesy of Robin Soudek. An unlikely candidate as “team goon,” Soudek is tied with Tim Traber for the lead in penalty minutes with 47.
  • Soudek’s soft hands have him second on the team in points with 13 goals, 27 points in 22 games. Is he pro material? The watch is on.
  • Kevin Sundher returns to the Royals from Wednesday night’s Super Series game against Team Russia and should dress for Friday night’s road game against the Vancouver Giants. Sundher’s experience with Team WHL was atypical, as he was given a 10 minute misconduct just four minutes into the game for checking from behind. Later he earned a tripping call, totaling 14 minutes in penalties, two minutes more than he’s accumulated so far this season.
  • At 6-foot-5, 230 lbs,. 16-year-old Royals defenceman Keenan Kanzig is easily the biggest player to be named to Team Pacific West for the 2012 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge from Dec. 29 to Jan. 4 in Windsor, Ont. The U17 world challenge is made up of 10 teams with players born 1995 or later; Quebec, Ontario, Pacific (Alberta, B.C., N.W.T., Yukon), Atlantic (New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, P.E.I) and West (Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Nunavut) against five International teams Germany, Sweden, Russia, Czech Republic and the U.S.