Kicking off a pivotal week with four games in six days against B.C. Division opponents, it was precisely the result the Kelowna Rockets were counting on.
Kole Lind and Carsen Twarynski each had a goal and an assist to lead the Rockets to a 4-1 victory over the Vancouver Giants Wednesday in WHL action at Prospera Place.
The Rockets (33-16-3-1), who were coming off back-to-back losses on the weekend to the Everett Silvertips, now lead the Victoria Royals by two points and the Giants by six atop the division.
“We did some good things and played well enough to win the game,” said head coach Jason Smith, whose Rockets will see the Royals three straight times this weekend.
“We still have some things to tighten up and improve on. I think our first period was really good, it got us some momentum in the game and got us off to a good start.”
Lind, with his 28th of the season, put the Rockets on top at 3:45 of the opening period.
Conner Bruggen-Cate, on a set up from Leif Mattson, gave the Rockets a two-goal lead with a shorthanded goal at 6:09 of the second, before the Giants’ Davis Koch cut the lead in half in the final minute of the period.
Conner Bruggen-Cate and Leif Mattson teamed up on the PK to keep the Rockets 1-goal lead. This sweet bingo and one from the bad guys (the G-Men) in the middle frame makes it 2-1 Kelowna through 40! 3rd coming right up! #KELvsVAN #WHLRockets #Bruggs #shorty 🚀🐉 pic.twitter.com/65zh0DammW
— Kelowna Rockets (@Kelowna_Rockets) February 8, 2018
Twarynski tacked on some insurance midway through the third with his team-leading 34th of the season on a pass from Lind, before Dillon Dube closed out the scoring with an empty netter.
Brodan Salmond stopped 25 shots in goal for the Rockets who out shot Vancouver 36-26.
The result extended the Rockets’ domination of the Giants at Prospera Place. Vancouver hasn’t won in Kelowna since March 2011, a span of 26 consecutive games.
The Rockets will face the Victoria Royals Friday and Saturday in Victoria, the again Monday afternoon at Prospera Place.
Face off is 2:05 p.m.
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