Rockets At Cougars Preview
Tonight in Prince George, the Cougars take the ice for their fourth game in the span of five nights. On the line tonight, their third consecutive double-header sweep of an opponent, and a six-game winning streak. Last night in front of 5282 strong the Cougars trailed early, but answered with four unanswered goals in a 4-1 victory over the Kelowna Rockets. The Cougars have now won two straight over the Rockets and will look to complete the three-game sweep tonight at CN Centre.
Record: 1-3 (0-2 on the Road)
Record VS. PG: 0-2
2015-16 Record VS. PG: 6-2 (3-1 at CN Centre)
Goals For/Goals Against: 9GF/16GA
Special Teams: PP: 15.8% (12th), PK: 66.7% (18th)
Head Coach: Jason Smith
WHO’S UP FRONT:
Jake Kryski: Had the only Rockets goal last night and now has two on the year. He’s tied with Cal Foote atop the Rockets scoring list with four points in four games.
WHO’S ON D:
Lucas Johansen: Logged a ton of minutes for Kelowna last night in his first game back from Washington Capitals Training Camp. He used his speed and his smarts effectively and a big game will be needed from him tonight.
WHO’S IN GOAL:
Michael Herringer: Was easily the Rockets best player last night. He made 40 saves and was a big reason why the score remained where it did. He battled hard all night, and to his credit has played well in both games this week against the Cougars. Does he get a night off tonight so that the young Broden Salmond gets a game?
Discipline: The Rockets took 10 penalties and it cost them three times. A much more disciplined approach will be needed in tonight’s rematch, as the team that wins the special teams war usually wins the game. You can expect a much more disciplined Kelowna team tonight.
PRINCE GEORGE COUGARS
Record: 5-0-0-0 (1-0 at home)
Record VS. KEL: 2-0 (1-0 at home)
2015-16 Record vs. KEL: 2-5-0-1 (1-3 at home)
Goals For/Goals Against: 21GF/10GA
Special Teams: PP: 14.8% (13th) PK: 96.2% (4th)
WHO’S UP FRONT:
Brad Morrison: Paced the Cougars offense with two goals a night ago. He now has two goals to go along with his six assists and sits second in team scoring to this point in the season. There’s no denying his skill and another outing like last night’s would go along way to help the Cougars to their sixth straight win.
Yan Khomenko: What a great pickup for the Cougars. Khomenko now has goals in back-to-back games and has four points in his first five games in a Cougars uniform. He along with Aaron Boyd and Josh Curtis have found some early chemistry together and it’s been great to see all three thriving early on.
WHO’S ON D:
Shane Collins: Chipped in with his first goal of the season to put the game out of reach for the Kelowna Rockets. The 19-year-old Rosetown, SK native has played very well in the early stages of the season and has really come into his own as a 19-year-old in this league. He and defence partner Ryan Schoettler played some big minutes in last night’s game and didn’t look out of place.
WHO’S IN GOAL:
Nick McBride: Richard Matvichuk said yesterday before the game that Ty Edmonds would play Friday and Nick McBride would play Saturday. Given that it’s four games in the span of five nights the Cougars are no doubt thrilled at the fact that they’ve got the capable and inspired Nick McBride waiting in the wings to get this opportunity. McBride’s last outing wasn’t his best as he was pulled in Langley, but he’s otherwise been brilliant in the early stages of the season and it’s not unrealistic whatsoever to expect a strong bounce-back game tonight.
Stay the course: Don’t get too high, don’t get too low. When the Cougars trailed yesterday they didn’t panic. They stuck to their guns and ended up on the right side of the scoreboard. As this team continues to bond and come together it will be very important for them to continue to handle adversity positively.
It’s great that the Cougars have started 5-0. But how about a shout out for the Spruce Kings now and then. After all they won their last 2. After getting off to a rocky start. Go Cougars. Go Kings
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