Friday, November 19th, 2021 Rockets 6 Fernie 1
The Rockets “Family Weekend” at the Plywood Palace began on Friday, with perhaps one of the most balanced games the team has played to date, coming away with a decisive 6-1 win over divisional-rival Fernie Ghostriders.
Golden was pretty much in control of this contest right from the opening face-off. Shots proved to be fairly even in the period, but Golden held a 2-0 lead at the end of the frame.
Rockets first got on the board at 7:07 when Nicolas Regan fed a pass to Dominic Fiorentino along the end boards, and Dominic in turn slid the puck to Drayden Gibson at the top of the crease, whose one-timer along the ice found the back of the net.
Rockets extended the lead to 2-0 at the 18:30 mark, as Dominic Fiorentino’s slick stickhandling in front of the Fernie cage provided the perfect rebound for Henry Loewen to hit for his eighth goal of the season.
In the middle stanza, Rockets ran the margin to 4-0 before the midway mark. At 6:06, Kade Cochlan battled hard along the right boards deep in the Fernie end, and fed a perfect pass to Derek Teare setup at the side of the net. Then again just :34 seconds later at 6:40, Jordan Lario and Will Vernon combined to neatly find Connor Funke alone on the left side, and his quick snapshot found the twine.
Fernie managed to get one back at 9:45, on the power play, off the stick of Ethan MacDuff.
A bit of penalty trouble in the third period for the Goldenites, forced to kill off a penalty at the start of the period, which they did successfully. Not only were the Rockets penalty-kill units very strong in this game, but very aggressive, striking for no less than a pair of shorthanded tallies in the third period, both off the stick of talented forward Brydon Foster.
The first shorthanded goal came at 7:03 when Brydon neatly poke-checked the puck away from a Fernie defenceman at his own blueline, raced down the right side on a breakaway, and tucked the puck to the bottom corner with a low backhand shot. Then, at exactly the 10:00 mark, some great moves by Drayden Gibson in the slot led to another big rebound which Foster fired into the cage for the 6-1 victory.
Despite being outshot in the contest, the Rockets were very strong defensively in the game (particularly on the penalty-kill), and balanced that with a solid offensive attack which applied good, sustained pressure in the Ghostrider end of the ice.