Saturday, October 9th, 2021 Rockets 4 Fernie 1
Specialty teams and strong goaltending combined to bring a Rockets victory against the visiting Fernie Ghostriders, before a Saturday night hometown crowd. Despite only directing a scant five shots towards the opposition goal, the Rockets drew a 1-1 tie after the opening twenty minutes. Striking just before the midway mark with a powerplay, the hometown charges moved into the lead, as Jordan Lario tucked the puck to the back of the Fernie net, with assists to Kade Cochlan and Aidan Ballance. However, just two minutes later, Fernie found the equalizer on a scramble in front of the Golden cage. Rockets were outshot 21-5 in the period and, the tie was due in great part to the sparkling heroics of Levi Hall in the Golden net. Time and again, as Fernie applied pressure and the shots coming from every angle, the Rockets netminder came up big on every occasion.
In the middle stanza, the Goldenites found themselves shorthanded to start the period. An impressive penalty-kill sparked the club as, at the 5:46 mark, a quick Zac Siudy wristshot along the ice found the bottom corner, and Golden moved into a 2-1 lead. It was an advantage they increased at 13:36 on the prettiest play of the game. Grabbing a loose puck just over his own blueline, Rockets sturdy defenceman Nicolas Regan fed a perfect breakaway pass to Will Vernon flying behind the Fernie defence. Moving in on net, the crafty Rocket forward made no mistake, neatly forcing the Fernie goalie to shift, while sliding the puck to the opposite side into the net. Score at the end of forty minutes stood at 3-1.
The Rockets penalty-kill units again came up big at the start of the final frame, blocking the visitors attack from every angle. The play proved fairly balanced through most of the period, before Fernie started running into penalty trouble, and the Rockets took full advantage.
At 17:09, Golden’s second powerplay marker of the night came off the stick of Will Vernon, putting the finishing touches on a 4-1 victory, and keeping the Rockets in first place atop the Eddie Mountain Division standings in the young season.
Levi Hall was outstanding in the contest, turning aside 39 of 40 shots which came his way.