The Victoria Royals allowed three first period goals in a 5-3 defeat to the Kelowna Rockets in the second game of a back-to-back series at the Save-on-Foods Memorial Center.
The Royals trailed 4-1 in the second period before Brandon Fushimi scored to bring the home team within two. Joe Hicketts would score for Victoria with under two minutes left in the third period to make it a one goal contest, but the Rockets’ Nick Merkley added an empty netter to seal the win. The Royals other marker was scored by Brandon Magee. Jesse Lees tallied two goals for Kelowna, while Rourke Chartier had the other tally.
Royals’ Netminder Coleman Vollrath got the start in net and stopped five of eight shots before being replaced by Jayden Sittler who made 17 saves on 18 shots. At the other end of the ice Rockets’ goaltender Michael Herringer stopped 30 of 33 shots for the win.
Victoria’s powerplay went 1/3=33.3%, while Kelowna went 0/3=0.0% with the man advantage.
Kelowna rookie Tate Coughlin, a Victoria native, got his 3rd assist of the year in the game.
The Royals continue their four games in five night homestand Friday against the Everett Silvertips and Saturday vs. the Regina Pats for Canadian Forces Night. Puck drop for both games is set for 7:05 p.m.