January 18, 2014 - 9:26 AM
VICTORIA - The Victoria Royals defeated the Kelowna Rockets 3-1 on Friday night in Victoria, in the first of two games this weekend between the two teams on Vancouver Island.
Rockets rookie Nick Merkley opened the scoring and the Rockets outshot Victoria 35-27, including 13-3 in the third period, but couldn't solve Royals netminder Patrik Polivka, who stopped 34 of 35 shots to give Victoria the win.
The Royals led 2-1 after the first and second periods before Steven Hodges scored his second of the game for Victoria, the insurance marker in the third period.
The loss is just the Rockets sixth in regulation this year as its record drops to 36-6-0-2 on the season while the Royals improve to 30-15-0-2 and sit in second place in the WHL BC Division.
The two teams will be right back at it Saturday night in Victoria before Kelowna returns home to meet the Everett Silvertips on Wednesday.
Kelowna will play three home games next week, Wednesday against Everett and then Friday vs. Medicine Hat and Saturday vs. Lethbridge.
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014