It was a pair of hat tricks from Dalton Sward and Neil Manning that lead the Giants to an 11 – 3 victory over the Victoria Royals in Vancouver Friday night, extending their win streak to 5 games.
Rookie scoring leader Marek Tvrdon was named the #1 star with 2 goals and 3 assists in a 5 point effort. His linemate Brendan Gallagher had a goal and 3 helpers, while their centerman James Henry was held off the score sheet.
After trailing 2-0 after 20 minutes, the Giants scored 6 straight in the 2nd and carried an 8-0 lead into the 3rd. Both clubs struck 3 times in the 3rd, with Hodges, Crooks and Nelson providing the goals for the Royals.
Vancouver’s power play scored 5 times on 7 opportunities, 4 times alone in the middle frame while out shooting the Royals 46 – 17 on the night. Victoria went 0 for 5 with the man advantage.
Netminder Keith Hamilton stopped 22 of 26 and was relieved by back up Jared Rathjen in the 2nd who allowed 7 on 20 shots.
Jesse Pauls marked his return to the line up after missing 13 games, throwing a big hit on Levi Bews, blocking a Gallagher shot, and stealing the puck on the back check.
The Giants now lead the best of 10 series 5 games to 2, and won’t meet again until March 3rd in Victoria. The Royals drop back to .500 on the season, 5 points back of the 2nd place Blazers.
Up next the defending WHL champions, and captain Hayden Rintouls former club, the Kootenay Ice. They’ll visit Victoria Saturday night as the Ice begin a 5 game in 7 day stretch travelling through the BC Division.
The pregame show starts at 6:45, puck drop at 7 on The Zone @ 91.3 FM.