Friday, Dec.16th, 2022 Rockies 8 Rockets 3
An early Xmas present for valley hockey fans this weekend, with a pair of games featuring the Golden Rockets and Columbia Valley Rockies in a home-and-home series. Action got underway Friday night in Invermere where the southern club, after surrendering an initial goal, recovered and rolled to a lopsided win.
Golden opened the scoring at 6:20, with speedster Brydon Foster connecting on a play with Tanner Watson. Columbia Valley answered with a pair of markers from Reed Sparrow and Bret Gerrits. Just :16 seconds later, Rockets managed to tie the contest at 2-2, with lanky forward Hayden Barr (his 7th of the season), unassisted.
In the middle frame Columbia Valley struck early on a Kobe Mason tally, a lead Keenan Ingram would expand to 4-2 at 13:32. Again, the Rockets replied with a quick goal (just :17 seconds later), when Evan Tsadilas setup Ethan Aebly. Invermere restored the two-goal margin at 5-3 with 5 minutes left in the period, with a Blake Hiltermann (recently acquired from Creston) goal.
At this point, the Goldenites were still within striking distance headed into the third period, despite being outshot after forty minutes 40-9.
In the third, Columbia Valley again struck early, with Lucas De La Salle, and then added a pair of markers, as each of Keenan Ingram and Bret Gerrits hit for their second goals of the game.
A fairly clean contest, with Golden taking five of the eight penalties handed out by referee Gerald Hofferd. Final score was 8-3. Rockets drastically outshot 59-23.
Saturday, Dec.17th, 2022 Rockies 4 Rockets 1
The backend of the mini-series moved to the Plywood Palace Saturday, where the Rockets were looking to rebound back into the win column. But once again, Columbia Valley came out on top.
This contest was much closer than the final score would indicate, with the play flowing end-to-end much of the sixty minutes. Both netminders, Rockets Levi Hall and Rockies Nate Glenn were sharp between the pipes.
No scoring in the opening frame, although at the 11:00 minute mark, Kade Cochlan (with a perfect up-ice pass), sent Jordan Lario in on a breakaway, but Glenn made a fine stop down low. Again, with less than one minute left, Rockets newcomer Donovin Fiorentino found himself all alone in front, and once more Nate Glenn came up big.
All the scoring of the contest came in the middle stanza, and it seemed that a goal was scored virtually every 90 seconds. Columbia Valley hit for the first three tallies. Just before the 5:00 minute mark Reed Sparrow moved the visitors into the lead, at 6:26 veteran Kayde Kinaschuk struck for his 15th of the year, and Reed Sparrow again found the range at 8:48 on a pretty passing play with Keenan Ingram and Anthony Domina.
The Rockets got one back at 1:57, with the talented Fiorentinos combining with Alexander Johnson, getting Golden on the scoreboard with Dominic pulling the trigger. But Anthony Domina restored the three-goal margin just over one minute later.
After a scoreless third period, Columbia Valley completed the weekend sweep of the Rockets to strengthen their lead atop the tough Eddie Mountain Division. Golden remains in a solid third-place position at the break.
This is the final game for the Rockets before the Christmas break in the schedule. On December 31st, the Rockets will once again travel to Invermere for an afternoon contest against Columbia Valley. Next home game for the local stars will be Tuesday, January 3rd, 2023 when they again match skills with the Kimberley Dynamiters. Be sure to catch all the action!!
The Golden Rockets Management, Staff and Players wish to send along best wishes to everyone. May this Christmas bring you and your family much Joy and Happiness, and may your New Year be Merry & Bright!!