Vancouver Giants’ Kaleb Bulych against the Kelowna Rockets in WHL action at Langley Events Centre on Nov. 18. Gary Ahuja Langley Times

Vancouver Giants’ Kaleb Bulych against the Kelowna Rockets in WHL action at Langley Events Centre on Nov. 18. Gary Ahuja Langley Times

Giants ground Rockets in WHL action

Vancouver builds early lead, never looks back in 6-1 win at Langley Events Centre

One night after their worse loss since opening weekend, the Vancouver Giants took advantage of a wounded opponent.

Smarting after a 6-2 loss the night before in Kamloops to the Blazers, the Giants erased the sting of that defeat with a 6-1 win over the Kelowna Rockets on Saturday night at the Langley Events Centre in Western Hockey League action.

Vancouver scored four times in the first period to chase Rockets goalie James Porter and that was more than enough offence as David Tendeck made 26 saves against a Kelowna team missing its top two scorers.

“We let our foot off the gas (yesterday) and had a nice bounce back today,” said Giants captain Tyler Benson, listing the fact his team played with energy, won more than their share of battles and got puck deeps.

Vancouver sits at 10-9-2-2 and their 24 points pull them within three of the second-place Rockets (12-7-2-1) in the B.C. Division.

And of Vancouver’s 13 combined losses, all have been by one goal except for the first two to start the season and then Friday’s night’s defeat in Kamloops.

A major problem in the most recent loss was a less-than stellar penalty kick as Kamloops scored five times on their power play.

A big way in correcting the penalty kill is not to let the opponent get many chances and the Rockets only had three power-play opportunities. Their lone goal came courtesy of Marek Skvrne on a rebound 6:18 into the third period. But by that time, the Giants were already up 5-0.

Saturday’s contest wasn’t about X’s and O’s but about the nuts and bolts of the game, said Vancouver coach Jason McKee.

“I liked our energy level and our compete level was much better,” he said.

McKee said his team reverted to their early season struggles where they were taking too many — and unnecessary — penalties.

“The stick infractions weren’t there and they are calling those, just like the NHL,” he said.

“We have to adjust and take that extra stride or two rather than reach in with our stick.”

It would be the Giants taking advantage on the power play in Saturday’s game.

With the Rockets two men down, Dylan Plouffe drew the defenders to one side and then sent the puck across to Brad Morrison for a one-time to open the scoring. James Malm then set Benson up for another power-play goal for the back-half of the two-man advantage.

The Rockets would get a few chances following that but Ty Ronning extended his goal-scoring streak to 10 games as he waited out a sliding defender and then went post and in for his 23rd goal of the season.

And before the period let out, Tyler Popowich completed a nice passing play with Brayden Watts for a tap-in in the final minute.

Kelowna would change goalies at intermission with Roman Basran entering the crease. But Malm would greet him with an early goal 1:32 in, getting the puck in tight and maneuvering the puck to his forehand and tucking him home.

The final goal came on a delayed penalty with less than five minutes to play as Benson scored from a bad angle. It was set up by Malm as both he and Benson finished with three points apiece.

Tendeck finished with 26 saves and also faced a third-period penalty shot, which Kyle Topping sent wide.

The goaltender has now allowed two goals or less in his last three starts. The four games before that saw him surrender a combined 20 goals.

“Just sticking to the plan, keep on battling, keep on marching and doing all the right things and things are starting to go my way,” he said.

Vancouver’s power play now has goals in six straight games, going 12-for-24 over that span. Not coincidentally, the team is 4-1-1-0 in those games. Prior to that, the Giants were a putrid 7-for-65 with the man advantage (10.8 per cent).

“It has definitely been big for us, it has given us a chance to win,” Benson said of the power play.

Vancouver is back in action on Nov. 22 when they host the Lethbridge Hurricanes at the LEC. Game time is 7 p.m.


sports@langleytimes.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Kelowna RocketsVancouver Giants

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Vancouver Giants’ James Malm against the Kelowna Rockets in WHL action at Langley Events Centre on Nov. 18. Gary Ahuja Langley Times

Vancouver Giants’ James Malm against the Kelowna Rockets in WHL action at Langley Events Centre on Nov. 18. Gary Ahuja Langley Times

Vancouver Giants’ Tyler Popowich against the Kelowna Rockets in WHL action at Langley Events Centre on Nov. 18. Gary Ahuja Langley Times

Vancouver Giants’ Tyler Popowich against the Kelowna Rockets in WHL action at Langley Events Centre on Nov. 18. Gary Ahuja Langley Times

Kelowna Rockets goaltender James Porter against the Vancouver Giants during WHL action at the Langley Events Centre on Nov. 18. Gary Ahuja Langley Times

Kelowna Rockets goaltender James Porter against the Vancouver Giants during WHL action at the Langley Events Centre on Nov. 18. Gary Ahuja Langley Times

Giants ground Rockets in WHL action

Kelowna Rockets’ Leif Mattson cuts in on Vancouver Giants goalie David Tendeck during WHL action at the Langley Events Centre on Nov. 18. Gary Ahuja Langley Times

Kelowna Rockets’ Leif Mattson cuts in on Vancouver Giants goalie David Tendeck during WHL action at the Langley Events Centre on Nov. 18. Gary Ahuja Langley Times

Giants ground Rockets in WHL action

Giants ground Rockets in WHL action

Just Posted

Ripy Jubbal of Abbotsford has received a 30-month jail sentence for the fraudulent use of credit cards and credit card data. (Facebook photo)
Abbotsford woman sentenced for $80K in fraudulent credit card purchases

Ripy Jubbal and spouse used identities of 19 different victims, court hears

....
Dutch Canadian Liberation Society donates commemorative panels to Abbotsford school

Upper Sumas Elementary School receives artwork highlighting students work with Dutch Heritage Day

A woman in the Harrison Mills area was attacked by a cougar on Tuesday, May 4. (File photo)
UPDATE: 2 cougars killed following attack in Harrison Mills

Attack victim remains in hospital in stable condition

....
Abbotsford graphic designer pitches Flyers rebrand for AHL team

Alex Svarez suggests new affiliate team turns back the clock and brings back Flyers moniker

Mike Haire, a former vice-principal at W. A. Fraser Middle School in Abbotsford, began court proceedings on Monday, May 3 in New Westminster for two child pornography offences.
Trial paused for former Abbotsford vice-principal charged with child porn

Judge reserves decision on admissibility of evidence against Mike Haire

Jose Marchand prepares Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination doses at a mobile clinic for members of First Nations and their partners, in Montreal, Friday, April 30, 2021. The National Advisory Committee on Immunization is coming under fire after contradicting the advice Canadians have been receiving for weeks to take the first vaccine against COVID-19 that they’re offered. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Trudeau says he is glad he got AstraZeneca, vaccines are only way out of pandemic

‘The most important thing is to get vaccinated with the first vaccine offered to you’

B.C.’s provincial health officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Dip in COVID-19 cases with 572 newly announced in B.C.

No new deaths have been reported but hospitalized patients are up to 481, with 161 being treated in intensive care

Solar panels on a parking garage at the University of B.C. will be used to separate water into oxygen and hydrogen, the latter captured to supply a vehicle filling station. (UBC video)
UBC parkade project to use solar energy for hydrogen vehicles

Demonstration project gets $5.6M in low-carbon fuel credits

FILE – A student arrives at school as teachers dressed in red participate in a solidarity march to raise awareness about cases of COVID-19 at Ecole Woodward Hill Elementary School, in Surrey, B.C., on Tuesday, February 23, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. ‘should be able to’ offer 1st dose of COVID vaccine to kids 12+ by end of June: Henry

Health Canada authorized the vaccine for younger teens this morning

A woman wears a face mask and shield to curb the spread of COVID-19 while walking in North Vancouver, B.C., on Wednesday, January 6, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. CDC updates info, acknowledging small respiratory droplets can spread COVID-19

Large droplets, not aerosols had been fixture of public health messaging for many months

A picture of Shirley Ann Soosay was rendered from a postmortem photographer and circulated on social media. (DDP graphic)
B.C. genealogist key to naming murder victim in decades-old California cold case

In July 1980, Shirley Ann Soosay was raped and stabbed to death

Mary Kitagawa was born on Salt Spring Island and was seven years old when she was interned along with 22,000 B.C. residents in 1942. (B.C. government video)
B.C. funds health services for survivors of Japanese internment

Seniors describe legacy of World War II displacement

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Most Read