DUBNetwork Feature Game of the night: Blazers @ Rockets 7:05 PM PST
Two teams face off in the BC Division tonight with the same number of wins, and only one point ultimately separating them in the standings. The Kamloops Blazers have met with the Kelowna Rockets five times already this season, making tonight meeting number six and an even bigger meeting in terms of standings.
The Kamloops Blazers (20-25-3-1) have been a very streaky team throughout the season, eluded to in their mid-season review back in December. It seems like the Blazers will win a series of games, then lose a series. With a bit of a weaker BC Division overall this season, they’re not a bad playoff contender with Dylan Ferguson in net, and three 40 point players to date. Last night, the Blazers wiped out the Cougars by a 4-1 score, the Blazers out shooting the Cougars in the game and in two of three periods. Brodi Stuart had an assist on the game winning goal, and scored the insurance marker as the Blazers moved to 5-4-1-0 in their last ten games.
The Kelowna Rockets (20-25-4-1) are coming into tonight’s game behind in the season series by a 4-1 margin, and have lost back-to-back games. Their most recent loss coming last night at the hands of the Spokane Chiefs, when nobody could beat Reece Klassen who blanked them by a 4-0 count. The ship in Kelowna seems to be sailing in uncharted waters for the first time in awhile for a franchise so used to winning in recent years. The Rockets are just 3-6-1-0 in their last ten games and have not won at home in regulation since December 29th.
Who to watch:
- Logan Stankoven (KAM) 0G, 1A- Watch for this highly touted 15 year-old forward to be a factor on the ice tonight.
- Kyle Topping (KEL) 19G, 33A- Held pointless in his last two games, Topping is the Rockets leading scorer and should be hungry to get back on the scoresheet.
Expected in net:
- Dylan Ferguson (KAM) 3.111 GAA, .906 SV%- Has only allowed a combined six goals in his last four starts. Not much is getting past Ferguson these days.
- Roman Basran (KEL) 3.036 GAA, .902 SV%- Basran has not allowed more than three goals in his last five games.
Other games on tap:
Moose Jaw Warriors (28-11-6-2) @ Prince Albert Raiders (41-7-0-2)
Prince Albert facing a tough stretch now, have lost three games in their last five games, facing a hot Warriors team tonight looking for their fifth straight win.
Edmonton Oil Kings (28-15-4-4) @ Saskatoon Blades (30-13-7-0)
Both teams are playing well of late, Edmonton is 7-2-0-1 in their last 10 after knocking off the CHL #1 Prince Albert Raiders. Saskatoon is 6-2-2-0 over their last ten and have points in 5 straight.
Calgary Hitmen (25-19-4-1) @ Red Deer Rebels (28-11-6-2)
The Hitmen have points in 5 straight games and are just 4 points behind the third place division rival Rebels. The Rebels power play has struggled since losing Alexander Alexeyev to injury. They are 1-for-22 over their last 5 games.
Swift Current Broncos (10-36-2-1) @ Lethbridge Hurricanes (26-15-4-4)
Coming off a big divisional win, the Hurricanes jumped back into second in the Central division. They will look to beat the hapless Broncos, who have just 10 wins on the season and are 32 points back of a playoff spot.
Spokane Chiefs (26-17-2-3) @ Portland Winterhawks (31-14-3-2)
Portland looks to avenge a 7-2 road loss to the Chiefs on Wednesday. Portland has a 10 point lead on the Chiefs for home ice advantage in the first round of the WHL playoffs.
Brandon Wheat Kings (22-19-3-4) @ Medicine Hat Tigers (27-18-2-2)
The Wheat Kings are making a desperate run at the final playoff spot, sitting 4 points back of the second wild card spot occupied by the Hitmen. The Tigers, who have lost their last 2 games, sit just 7 points up on the Wheat Kings.
Prince George Cougars (16-28-3-2) @ Vancouver Giants (32-13-2-1)
It is first against last in the BC division as the Cougars will look to get back on track after losing 8 straight games. The Giants are coming off a loss, but have points in 9 of their last 10 games and lead the BC division by 15 points over the Royals.
Tri-City Americans (25-19-2-1) @ Victoria Royals (25-20-1-1)
Neither of these teams are particularly hot right now, Tri-City is 5-4-0-1 over their last 10 and are 4 points back of the third place Chiefs, while Victoria is 4-5-0-1. The Royals have points in their last 3 coming into tonight’s tilt. They are 7 points up on the Rockets for home ice in round 1.
Seattle Thunderbirds (19-23-5-1) @ Everett Silvertips (36-12-1-1)
Another first against worst game, the Silvertips are winners of 3 straight and have a 7 point lead for the division title. The surging Thunderbirds are tied for the final playoff birth in the West and are 6-2-1-1 in their last 10.