There was no magic comeback for the Rockets on Saturday afternoon as a flat start and some undisciplined play cost them dearly in a 6-3 defeat to the Valley West Hawks.
With the best of 3 BCMML semi-final series now tied at one game apiece, it all comes down to a win or go home scenario for both clubs on Sunday morning.
A flat start cost the Rockets on the games 1st shift as the two most dangerous Hawks combined for a goal just :33 seconds into the contest. Davis Koch finished a nice feed from Matt Bradley to give the Hawks tons of early life.
Their spirits were lifted even further as they notched a power play goal off the stick of Trevor Ayre at the 2:59 mark of the opening frame.
After falling behind 3-0, the Rocket gained a spark as Liam Finlay connected on his 8th of the post season with 3:54 to go in the opening period.
In the 2nd, the Rockets pulled a little closer as they got the only goal of the period. Jake Kryski entered the Hawks zone and wristed a long distance shot past Cole Forbes to pull the Rockets to within one after 40 minutes.
Sadly for the Rockets, there was to be no 3rd period magic that the CNC faithful have grown all to accustom to this season. The Hawks scored 3 times to pull away to a 6-2 lead. Jake Kryski notched his 2nd of the game and 3rd of the post season, but the damage was done.
Adding insult to injury for the Rockets on Saturday was some tremendously undisciplined play, something that left general manager David Michaud scratching his head "the playoffs are an emotional time, but our team is based on speed and skill, not trying to prove we are the tougher of the two teams. As a 20 man group, we have to have a more disciplined approach and not allow Valley West to distract us from our game, no matter how frustrating it can be to play against a group like that."
The Rockets will be forced to play game 3 without the services of Tanner Wishnowski. An ejection inside the last 10 minutes of the 3rd period carries an automatic one-game suspension.
The 3rd and deciding game of the series will go tomorrow morning at 10:00 am. The winner moves on the BCMML Championship series next weekend, while the loser will have a summer of "what could have been"