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Scott Walford with a pair of assists in Game 3. Photo credit: Christopher Kelsall

The Victoria Royals took the Vancouver Giants into overtime for the second straight game despite being heavily outgunned in the shot department. They escaped with period leads of 2-1 and 3-2 despite being outshot 14-6 and 14-3 during the first two periods respectively, but lost in overtime, 5-4.

It was Game 3 of their second-round Western Hockey League playoff series.

“We will take it one game at a time. Winning Thursday here in Victoria will allow us to get more bodies back in the line-up and a chance to come back and win,” said coach Dan Price.

Tuesday, the Royals were without key players Tanner Sidaway, Ralph Jarratt and Kody McDonald.

When asked about Ralph Jarratt’s condition, Price said, “he is day to day and should be back in the line-up.”

With two 20-year-olds out of the line-up, Mitchell Prowse said that the next game is for them. “We want to play the next game for the guy next to you, and we want to play for the 20-year-olds, so they can get back in the line-up.”

The Giants won the regular season series 6-2-1-1 against the Royals. They won the first two games of their playoff series in Langley 3-0 and 2-1.

During the first round of the playoffs the Royals took out the Kamloops Blazers 4-2 while Vancouver defeated the Seattle Thunderbirds by the same margin.

Scott Walford factored in the first two goals. On the first one, he sent a wrist shot on goal from the point, and the puck got by a screened Trent Miner by deflecting off of Sean Gulka. Tarun Fizer earned the second assist on the play; it was Gulka’s second goal of the post-season.

With 29 seconds remaining in the opening frame, Igor Martynov received a Walford pass just inside the right faceoff circle, he spun and fired the puck past Miner, high glove-side. Evan Patrician was serving a too-many-men penalty at the time.

Former Royals player Jared Dmytriw opened the scoring at 3:32 after a long foray in the Royals end. The Giants spent the majority of the first period there.

Griffen Outhouse kept the Royals in the game.

“We didn’t start the game the way we wanted to, but we made the most of the chances we had and Outhouse kept us in the game, which gave us an opportunity to win it in overtime. The series could easily be 2-1 either way,” said Price.

The second period started like the first except that the Royals were assessed a pair of penalties early on.

Much to the chagrin of 4,622 fans in attendance, sixth-round Washington Capitals 2018 draft pick, Slovak, Milos Roman scored on the first one at 3:44 with his second goal of the post-season.

Walford was off for cross-checking.

D-Jay Jerome on the forecheck. Photo credit: Christopher Kelsall

At 13:06, Prowse, while on the fore-check, picked up a mishandled puck from a Giants defender, skated into the top of the slot and fired a harmless looking wrist shot that went high glove side on Miner. It was his first goal of the post-season, unassisted.

Fourteen seconds into the third period Owen Hardy scored an identical goal to Prowse’s, from the same spot. Bowen Byram and Dawson Holt assisted.

In desperation, the Royals dug deep in the Giants zone and their fore-checking efforts paid off with a powerplay opportunity when Alex Kannock Leipert dropped a Royals forward behind the Giants net.

During the ensuing powerplay, the Royals put sustained pressure on the Giants. Noah Lamb on the point, fed Carson Miller the puck, goal-side, he turned his back to the play and fired the puck up high, in-close on Miner to put the Royals up 4-3.

Kannok Leipert forced overtime when he scored with 4:20 remaining in the game to tie the game at 4-4. It was again a high, glove-hand side placement.

With 6:26 remaining in overtime and the Royals hanging on, outshot 57-20, Hardy scored his second of the game with a backhand shot in close on Outhouse’s stick side. He took two wacks at the puck to make it flutter in.

Moments before, Phillips Schultz gingerly skated off the ice as he was slammed into the Giants open bench door.

Game Summary:

Gamesheet ­– bit.ly/2ONQzTs.

Scoring:

Royals – Mitchell Prowse 1g-1a, Scott Walford 0g-2a, Sean Gulka 1g-0a, Igor Martynov 1g-0a, Carson Miller 1g-0a, Tarun Fizer 0g-1a, Noah Lamb 0g-1a, D-Jay Jerome 0g-1a.

Vancouver – Owen Hardy 2g-0a (Game Winner), Bowen Byram 0g-2a, Dawson Holt 0g-2a, Jared Dmytriw 1g-0a, Milos Roman 1g-0a, Alex Kannok Leipert 1g-0a, Dallas Hines 0g-1a, Evan Patrician 0g-1a, Dylan Plouffe 0g-1a, Davis Koch 0g-1a, Tristen Nielsen 0g-1a, Seth Bafaro 0g-1a.

Goaltending:

Royals – Griffen Outhouse (L) – 73:34 mins, 52 saves on 57 shots.

Vancouver – Trent Miner (W) – 73:34 mins, 16 saves on 20 shots.

 

Powerplay:

Royals – 1/3 = 33.3%.

Vancouver – 1/2 = 50.0%.

Notes:

Extra Time: This evening marked the 14th time in Victoria’s playoff history that the club has played in overtime. In those contests, they are 6-8.

 

Tight Contests: Tonight’s loss was the 29th time this season, including playoffs, that Victoria has played in a game decided by one goal. In those contests, the Royals have posted a mark of 17-6-4-2, which includes a 2-2-4-0 record against the Giants.

 

Starting It Off: In each of the Royals’ nine playoff games this year, the team that has scored first has been victorious. Meanwhile in the Giants’ nine postseason contests, the club who has opened the scoring has won seven times.

Playoff Experience: Tonight’s rosters featured a combined 713 games-worth of playoff experience. The Royals held the edge with 373 postseason appearances, while Vancouver had 340.

Round 2 Playoff Schedule: The Royals’ second round playoff schedule against the Vancouver Giants is as follows:

Game 4 – Thursday, April 11th – Save On Foods Memorial Centre – 7:05 p.m.

Game 5 – Saturday, April 13th – Langley Events Centre – 7:00 p.m. (If necessary)

Game 6 – Monday, April 15th – Save On Foods Memorial Centre – 7:05 p.m. (If necessary)

Game 7 – Wednesday, April 17th – Langley Events Centre – 7:00 p.m. (If necessary)