In lieu of a bye week in their first half of the season, the Rockets will play a couple of exhibition games over the weekend against the Tips, at the league showcase in Richmond.
Last weekend: The Rockets were one of four teams in the league to sweep their opening weekend, picking up back-to-back wins of 4-2 and 6-5 (OT) over the Vancouver NE Chiefs. Other teams to sweep their first two games were the Greater Vancouver Canadians (South Island), Valley West Hawks (Cariboo), Vancouver NW Giants (North Island).
Head-to-Head/Historically Speaking: This weekend will be the first matchup between the two teams. The Jr. Silvertips were also participants in the Rockets’ preseason Icebreaker tournament this year, and played MML competitors including the NE Chiefs, Kootenay Ice, Thompson Blazers, and Cariboo Cougars.
Top performances: The Rockets had a few notable performances to recognize from the first week of the season. After a three-point performance (1G,2A) on Saturday, Ben King followed that up with an identical stat line on Sunday. His six points in two games lead the team in scoring, and sits behind only Cameron MacDonald of the Valley West Hawks (7 pts) for the best offensive weekend. Other top Rockets were fellow rookie Nolan Corrado (2G,2A), veteran Mitchell Gove (1G, 2A), and rookie d-man Tanner Brown, who had three points including the overtime winner on Sunday morning.
Spreading the wealth: Also worth noting that the Rockets led a very balanced offensive attack against the Chiefs. While a ten-goal weekend will always help pad some stats, it’s worth noting that of the ten forwards who dressed, only Jordan Lowry and Benn Krivoshen were held pointless. On the back end, Brown, Rhys Lepine, and Remy Aquilon all hit the scoreboard.
Between the Pipes: Saturday afternoon, Cole Schwebius had a solid debut performance, allowing only two goals and shutting the door entirely in the third period of the Rockets win. On Sunday, Roman Basran allowed two goals after the first 20:49 of the game, and enabled the Rockets to complete the overtime comeback. For now, expect the duo to continue splitting time between the pipes.
Lineup News: The Rockets have good news on the injury front, with veteran Will Reimer back in the lineup this week.