Kelowna’s Schael Higson fends off a Blazers forechecker. Photo: Marissa Baecker/Kelowna Rockets Images

Kelowna’s Schael Higson fends off a Blazers forechecker. Photo: Marissa Baecker/Kelowna Rockets Images

Rockets drop battle to Blazers in shootout, inch closer to playoffs

The Rockets host rival Blazers on home ice Saturday

The Kelowna Rockets were only a few shootout goals away from pulling further away from the Blazers in the playoff race, but suffered a 2-1 loss to Kamloops Friday night.

A shootout loss still banks the Rockets a single point, as they now are six points ahead of the Blazers for the final playoff position in the B.C. division. With a rematch in Kelowna Saturday night, the Rockets will need a winning result to relieve some of the pressure from Kamloops as the regular season heads into its final week.

Nolan Foote tied the game up for the Rockets early in the third period. Foote added to his team leading goal count with his 34th goal of the season.

The Rockets were out-shot 33-27 but solid play from Rockets’ goalie Roman Basran, who stopped all but one, would ensure Kelowna a single point by forcing extra time.

Kyle Topping and Nolan Foote couldn’t solve Kamloops goalie Dylan Garand in the shootout, as Kamloops came away with the win on their home ice.

The Rockets and Blazers will play their final games against each other Saturday night at Prospera Place. With only three games remaining for the Rockets, and their final game against Vancouver March 16, Saturday’s rematch against the Blazers could be a deciding factor to see if the Rockets advance to the post season.

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