Okanagan Rockets rally for sweep of Hawks

Forward Tanner Wishnowski scored twice for the Okanagan Rockets in Saturday
Forward Tanner Wishnowski scored twice for the Okanagan Rockets in Saturday's win over the Valley West Hawks.
— image credit: Warren Henderson/Capital News

There are more than a few reasons the Okanagan Rockets are on top of the B.C. Major Midget League.

Not the least of which is their refusal to go down without a fight.

The BCMML-leading Rockets engineered third-period comebacks on both Saturday and Sunday afternoons at the Capital News Centre for a weekend sweep of the third-place Valley WestHawks.

"For us, there seems to be that constant belief that we can find a goal when we need one, that we're never really out of a game," said Rockets' GM David Michaud. "It's not an enviable position to be in, but I think it points to our depth and the belief the guys have in each other. Obviously, it's not a habit you want to get into, but so far the guys have responded well to adversity."

The Rockets (20-3-1) reached the 20-win plateau at the earliest stage in team history, and continue to leads the Vancouver Northwest Giants by four points for top spot.

On Saturday, Okanagan scored twice in the final three minutes to earn a 5-4 victory.

After a goal by Kristian Blumenschein to tie the game at the 17-minute mark, Tanner Wishnowski's second goal of the afternoon with just 48 seconds left proved to be the winner.

Brendan Barry made his first start since Nov. 17 after an appendectomy, stopped 22 saves for his seventh win.

On Sunday, the Rockets fell behind 4-3 in the third, but again roared back with three straight goals for the win. A shorthanded marker by captain Branden Wagner with 7:18 remaining proved decisive for the home side.

Tyson Jost scored his league-leading 20th and 21st goals of the season, while Jake Kryski, Linden Hora and Tanner Campbell scored singles. Reid Kilburn earned his 13th victory in net for the Rockets as he turned aside 22 Hawks' shots.

The Rockets will wrap up their pre-Christmas portion of the schedule this coming weekend with a home-and-home set against the Thompson Blazers.

The Rockets are home at 3 p.m. on Saturday, before hopping on the bus for an 11 a.m. matinee on Sunday in Kamloops.





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