The Okanagan Rockets had their season end in heartbreak on Sunday with a 6-4 loss in Game #3 of the BCMML semi finals to the Valley West Hawks.
The opening period was an offensive explosion and it started with the Hawks potting the first three goals of the game. Bradley Stonnell opened the scoring just 2:24 in on a wrister past Rockets net minder Cole Demers before Justyn Gurney tipped in a point shot from Ian Ross to extend Valley West’s lead to 2-0.
The Hawks would add to their lead just over a minute and a half later on a scramble behind Demers to make it 3-0 Hawks. The Rockets would call a timeout at that point and things changed drastically.
Eli Zummack got the Rockets on the board, banking in a shot from behind the goal line for his 1st of the playoffs and cutting the Hawks lead to 3-1 before Chase Stevenson scored a forehand backhand breakaway goal to make it 3-2 Valley West and that’s how things would stand after an exciting 20 minutes of hockey.
The Hawks would score the only goal of the middle stanza and it came courtesy of a power play. James Malm found a seam past a heavily screened Demers to put the Hawks back up by two with a 4-2 score. That would be the only scoring of the 2nd period but not for a lack of chances. Valley West would go to the dressing room with a 27-15 lead on the shot clock as well.
The Rockets got themselves within a goal at the start of the 3rd period as Jordan Todd earned his first of the playoffs, driving down the middle of the ice and burying just 1:05 into the third.
The Hawks would again extend their lead to two goals off a Christian Bosa marker, coming after the Rockets were unable to capitalize on a 5-on-3-man advantage. Luka Burzan provided the Hawks with a three-goal lead, splitting the Rockets defense and beating Demers glove side.
Eli Zummack added his 2nd of the game after a turnover inside the Hawks zone to make it a 6-4 Valley West lead and that’s how the game would finish, ending the Rockets season.
Cole Demers made 30 saves on 36 shots while Nic Tallarico stopped 25 of the 29 shots he faced over the course of the game.