Weekend Preview: Rockets vs Canadians
The Okanagan Rockets (23-6-5) travel to Richmond this weekend to face the 5th place Greater Vancouver Canadians (18-13-3). The Canadians are battling the Hawks for playoff positioning, while the Rockets are trying to hold off the NE Chiefs and remain in the 3rd seed.
Last Weekend: The Rockets snapped a 4 game road losing skid to defeat the South Island Royals twice in Victoria. The Rockets earned wins of 2-1 and 8-0 to take the 4 game season series with the Royals 3-0-1. The Canadians meanwhile swept the Kootenay Ice in dominating fashion with wins of 10-2 and 10-0.
Red Hot: The Canadians are finding their stride with the playoffs around the corner. Heading into the weekend, the Canadians have won 6 straight and are unbeaten in 7 consecutive. The Canadians have 47 goals for during the unbeaten streak.
Record Books: Brett Mennear and Liam Finlay are both closing in on Rockets milestones. Mennear enters the weekend just 6 points away from breaking Brett Mulchay's club record for career points. Mulchay posted 86 points in 80 games with the Rockets. Mennear currently has 81 points. Liam Finlay meanwhile has 35 assists, just 4 off the team record of 39.
Exclusive Company: The 2012-2013 Rockets are just the 2nd team in club history to reach the 23 win mark. This version of the Rockets is still chasing the 2006-2007 club that posted 27 wins. The Rockets can surpass the club record if they earn 5 wins in their 6 remaining game.
Lots to Love: February has seen Spencer Hewson's solid play continue. Hewson has 4 points in 4 February games and has 10 points in his last 10 games overall. Hewson, in his first season with the Rockets has 12 goals and 16 assists this season.
Red Light District: Brenden Mills earned a pair of wins against the South Island Royals last weekend and in the process stopped 44 of 45 shots along the way. Add it up and it was good for a .977 sv % on the weekend. The 17-year old Mills is now 11-4-4 with a 2.99 GAA on the year.
Historically Speaking: The Rockets are just 3-6-3 since 2006 against the Canadians on the road. Overall, the Canadians are just one of 3 teams that Rockets have a sub .500 record against. Since 06, the Rockets are 8-11-7 against Greater Vancouver. (Cougars and Giants are the other clubs)
When We Saw You Last: The Rockets last saw the Canadians back on November 17th and 18th at the Capital News Centre. Both games were extremely tight checking affairs. In game one, the Canadians scored a late goal to salvage a 2-2 tie, while the Rockets held off the Canadians for a 3-1 win in the 2nd game. 5 different Rockets have accounted for the goals against Greater Vancouver this season. Reid Kilburn and Brenden Mills split the goaltending duties with Mills earning the win as he stopped 18 of 19 shots.