Junior hockey: Giants club Rockets, Chiefs take 3-0 lead

It’s a busy weekend for the Kelowna Rockets with three games in three days. On Friday, Kelowna lost 7-4 to Vancouver. On Saturday and Sunday, the Rockets will host the Portland Winterhawks.
It’s a busy weekend for the Kelowna Rockets with three games in three days. On Friday, Kelowna lost 7-4 to Vancouver. On Saturday and Sunday, the Rockets will host the Portland Winterhawks. Marissa Baecker / Kelowna Rockets Images

A round-up of results from junior hockey teams in the Okanagan.


Vancouver 7, Kelowna 4

At Langley, Milos Roman had a four-point evening with a goal and three assists as the Giants scored four unanswered goals to break open what was a close game on Friday night.

Nicholas Draffin, Dallas Hines, Alex Kannok Leipert, Jadon Joseph, Davis Koch and Tristen Nielsen also scored for Vancouver (42-14-2-2), which trailed 3-2 after the first period but led 5-4 after the second.

READ MORE: WHL Roundup: Friday, March 1, 2019

Nolan Foote, with two goals, including the game-opening marker just 1:44 into the contest, Mark Liwiski and Alex Swetlikoff replied for Kelowna (26-30-4-1). The shots on goal were 42-39 for Vancouver.

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The Rockets held leads of 1-0, 2-1 and 3-2 before the Giants tied, then forged ahead midway through the second period. In the third, the Giants added their sixth goal at 9:58, then an empty-net marker at 19:00.

James Porter started in goal for Kelowna, making 23 stops on 27 shots before giving way to Roman Basran, who was 12-for-14 in relief. David Tendeck stopped 35 of 39 shots for Vancouver.

The Rockets were 1-for-3 on the power play while the Giants were 1-for-2. The attendance was 3,954.

In other WHL action from Friday, the league-leading Prince Albert Raiders earned their 50th win of the season, a 2-1 shootout victory over Red Deer. The Raiders (50-8-2-2) have 104 points with six regular-season games left.

Also, the Portland Winterhawks (37-18-3-3) outshot Spokane 52-35 but fell 5-2 to the Chiefs.

The Rockets and Winterhawks will clash twice this weekend at Prospera Place in Kelowna; Saturday at 7:05 p.m., and Sunday at 5:05 p.m.

At Portland on Friday, the Chiefs scored quickly, just 6:04 into the game, en route to building a 4-0 lead early in the third period. Portland scored at 2:25 of the third to make it 4-1, but Spokane restored its four-goal cushion at 10:50. Joachim Blichfeld tallied his 52nd goal of the season on the power play for Portland at 18:48 to close out the scoring.

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Blichfeld, a 20-year-old left winger, leads the league in scoring with 52 goals and 53 assists 105 points. Cody Glass is second in Winterhawks scoring with 15 goals and 54 assists for 69 points.

Blichfeld is a 6-foot-1 forward from Denmark and is in his third season with Portland. Last season, he had 24 goals and 32 assists for 56 points in 56 regular-season games. In 2016-27, his rookie campaign, he had 28 goals and 30 assists for 58 points in 63 regular-season games.

Blichfeld was selected in the seventh round, 210th overall, by San Jose in the 2016 NHL draft.


Salmon Arm 5, Vernon 3

At Vernon, Ethan Langenegger made 34 saves as Salmon Arm held off Vernon to take a 1-0 lead in their best-of-seven, first-round playoff series.

Jonathan Krahn, Andy Stevens, Jack Sampson, John Little and Trevor Adams scored for Salmon Arm, which held period leads of 2-0 and 5-2.

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Jagger Williamson, with the game’s last two goals, and Jesse Lansdell, who made it 3-1 at 2:44 of the second, replied for Vernon. Williamson’s first goal of the night came at 16:43 of the second to make it 5-2. He closed out the scoring at 13:57 of the third.

The Vipers outshot the Silverbacks 37-23, including 13-8 in the second period and 12-3 in the third. Aidan Porter, with 11 saves on 15 shots, and Bradley Cooper, who was 7 of 8 in relief, split netminding duties for Vernon.

The Silverbacks were 2-for-3 on the power play while Vernon was 1-for-3. The attendance at Kal Tire Place was 1,641.

In other Interior Division playoff action from Friday, Merritt beat visiting Trail 4-3 to take a 1-0 series lead.

Saturday’s schedule:

  • The Penticton Vees will host the Cowichan Valley Capitals in Game 2 at 6 p.m. The Vees trail the series 1-0 after losing 4-1 on Thursday. Games 3 and 4 will take place Tuesday and Wednesday in Duncan.
  • The Merritt Centennials will host the Trail Smoke Eaters in Game 2 at 7 p.m. Games 3 and 4 will take place Tuesday and Wednesday in Trail.
  • The Vernon Vipers will host the Salmon Arm Silverbacks in Game 2 at 6 p.m. Games 3 and 4 will take place Monday and Wednesday in Salmon Arm.
  • And, lastly, the West Kelowna Warriors and Wenatchee Wild will start their series at 7:05 p.m. in Wenatchee. Game 2 is set for Sunday at 6 p.m., with Games 3 and 4 taking place Tuesday and Wednesday in West Kelowna.


Kelowna 4, Osoyoos 0

At Osoyoos, Lane Paddison scored twice and Braeden Mitchell posted the shutout as the Chiefs blanked the Coyotes to take a 3-0 lead in their best-of-seven playoff series.

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Kayson Gallant and Ryan Stack also scored for Kelowna. Brody Dale had two assists while Stack had a three-point night with two assists. Paddison also had a three-point outing with an assist.

Osoyoos was outshot 41-28, with Daniel Paul making 37 saves for the Coyotes. Osoyoos has been outscored 17-2 so far in the series, having lost 10-1 in Game 1 and 3-1 in Game 2.

Kelowna was 4-for-13 on the power play while Osoyoos was 0-for-8. The attendance was 211.

Revelstoke 4, Kamloops 0

At Kamloops, Liam McGarva had an easy time in goal for Revelstoke, stopping just 11 shots for the shutout, as the Grizzlies took a 3-0 series lead over the Storm.

Josh Irvine, Ethan Schaeffer, Jon Vandermolen and Jaden Jay scored for Revelstoke, which outshot Kamloops 52-11. The Storm, who trailed 2-0 and 3-0 at the period breaks, had a 48-save effort from Ethan Paulin-Hatch.

Revelstoke was 3-for-9 on the power play while Kamloops was 0-for-3. The attendance was not available.

The Grizzlies have outscored the Storm 17-3 so far in the series, having won the first two games by scores of 10-2 and 3-1.

Summerland 4, Princeton 2

At Princeton, Mitchell Gove scored twice for Summerland as the Steam took a 2-1 series lead by winning Game 3.

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Linden Gove and Cody Swan also scored for Summerland, which scored twice late in the third period. Linden Goven made it 3-2 with 3:37 left, with Swan scoring into an empty net with 42 seconds left.

Brendan Adams and Achille Casali replied for Princeton. Adams scored a shorthanded marker at 9:54 of the first to make it 1-1, with Casali levelling the score at 2-2 at 12:04 of the third.

Eric Scherger stopped 25 of 27 shots for the Steam, with Jaysen MacLean stopping 21 of 24 shots for the Posse.

Summerland was 0-for-3 on the power play while Princeton was 0-for-2. The attendance was 300.

Sicamous 2, 100 Mile House 0

At Sicamous, Jordan Sheasgreen scored twice and Cole Steinke posted the shutout as the Eagles blanked the Wranglers in Game 3 of their best-of-seven series.

Jakob Gullmes stopped 27 of 28 shots for 100 Mile House, which leads the series 2-1. For Sicamous, Steinke stopped all 28 shots for the whitewash.

Sheasgreen scored twice in the third, at 11:27 to make it 1-0, then into an empty net with 13 seconds left to close out the scoring.

Sicamous was 1-for-6 on the power play while 100 Mile House was 0-for-5. The attendance was not available.

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Saturday’s schedule:

  • The Osoyoos Coyotes will host the Kelowna Chiefs in Game 4, 7:45 p.m. at the Sun Bowl. Kelowna leads the series 3-0. Game 5, if necessary, will take place Monday, 7 p.m. in Kelowna.
  • The Princeton Posse will host the Summerland Steam in Game 4, 7 p.m. at the Princeton and District Arena. Summerland leads the series 2-1, with Game 5 taking place Monday, 7:30 p.m. in Summerland. Game 6, if necessary, is set for Tuesday, 7 p.m. in Princeton.
  • The Kamloops Storm will host the Revelstoke Grizzlies in Game 4, 7:15 p.m. at Memorial Arena in Kamloops. Revelstoke leads the series 3-0. Game 5, if necessary, will take place Monday, 7 p.m. in Revelstoke.
  • The Sicamous Eagles will host the 100 Mile Wranglers in Game 4, 7 p.m. at the Sicamous and District Recreation Centre. 100 Mile House leads the series 2-1. Game 5 is scheduled for Monday, 7 p.m. in 100 Mile House, with Game 6, if needed, taking place Tuesday, 7 p.m. in Sicamous.
  • The Grand Forks Border Bruins will host the Beaver Valley Nitehawks in Game 3, 7 p.m. at Jack Goddard Memorial Arena. Beaver Valley leads the series 2-0. Game 4 is scheduled Sunday, 7 p.m. in Grand Forks.