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PREVIEW: Vancouver Giants at Victoria Royals (Game #17)

Tricia Mercuri

Tonight, the Vancouver Giants will take to the ice at Prospera Place for the final time in 2020-21 when they clash with the Victoria Royals. Despite some strong efforts in recent games, the Giants have dropped four straight, and sit second in the B.C. Division standings with 18 points. The Royals are coming off a spirited 2-1 overtime victory last night over Prince George, and will be looking to put together their first winning streak of the 2020-21 campaign.

WEBCASTRADIOGAME NOTES

VICTORIA ROYALS

OVERVIEW

Head Coach: Dan Price

Record: 2-13-1-0

Last Game: A 2-1 overtime victory last night against Prince George

Record vs. VAN: 0-4

Goals For/Goals Against: 36 GF/71 GA (-35)

Power Play: 18.8% (16th)

Penalty Kill: 69.7% (19th)

Leading Scorers: Brayden Tracey (16GP – 8G – 9A – 17PTS), Tarun Fizer (14GP – 3G – 10A – 13PTS), Brandon Cutler (16GP – 6G – 5A – 11PTS)

BACK IN THE WIN COLUMN

Last night in Kamloops, the Victoria Royals were 2-1 overtime winners over the Prince George Cougars. Rookie forward Brayden Schuurman scored three minutes into overtime, giving the Royals their first victory in a span of 11 games. The other Royals goal came courtesy of Brandon Cutler on the power play. Between the pipes, veteran Adam Evanoff made 40 saves on 41 shots faced to earn the victory in goal. The Royals power play was 1/5 and the penalty kill was 2/2.

THE MATCHUP WITH VANCOUVER

The Victoria Royals have gone winless in four tries so far this season against Vancouver. Heading into tonight’s matchup, the Royals have been outscored 20-11. That said, they’ve had a number of players perform well against Vancouver. Captain Tarun Fizer leads all Royals skaters with five points (2G, 3A) against the Giants while Brayden Tracey has scored three goals to go along with one assist for four points. The Royals power play has gone 4/21 against Vancouver.

ROYAL NOTES

  • Brayden Schuurman is tied for the B.C. Division lead in rookie goal-scoring with five goals. He’s joined by Mazden Leslie (Vancouver), Kyren Gronick (Prince George) and Connor Levis (Kamloops).
  • When leading after two periods, the Royals are 2-2-1-0.
  • The Royals are 15-17-2-0 against the Giants over the past five seasons.
  • The Royals are 2-3-1-0 in games decided by a single goal.

VANCOUVER GIANTS

OVERVIEW

Head Coach: Michael Dyck

Record: 9-7-0-0

Last Game: A 4-3 loss on Thursday evening to Kelowna.

Record vs. VIC: 4-0

Goals For/Goals Against: 51 GF/41 GA (+10)

Power Play: 19.7% (14th)

Penalty Kill: 84.3% (6th)

Leading Scorers: Justin Sourdif (16GP – 7G – 18A – 25PTS), Tristen Nielsen (16GP – 11G – 11A – 22PTS), Eric Florchuk (16GP – 4G – 11A – 15PTS)

LAST GAME

The Vancouver Giants dropped a 4-3 decision on Thursday night against the Kelowna Rockets. Zack Ostapchuk paced the Giants attack with two first period goals while Bryce Bader added a second period marker. Unfortunately the Giants let a 3-2 third period lead slip away as the Rockets scored twice in a span of three minutes and 58 seconds to take the lead late in the game. Goaltender Trent Miner made 22 saves on 26 shots faced for the Giants who went zero-for-four on the power play, and one-for-three on the penalty kill.

OSTAPCHUK ON THE RADAR

 2003-born forward Zack Ostapchuk is the next Giant hoping to hear his name called at the NHL Draft. The product of St. Albert, AB is in his second season after posting five goals and three assists for eight points in 44 games last season. He was originally selected 12th overall by the Giants in the 2018 WHL Bantam Draft. In January, Ostapchuk was one of 36 WHL players to crack NHL Central Scouting’s Preliminary Players to Watch List. So far this season, Zack Ostapchuk has six goals and six assists for 12 points in 16 games. He leads the Giants with three game-winning goals.

GIANT NOTES

  • Vancouver’s power play has gone 7/16 against Victoria.
  • Justin Sourdif leads all Giants with 11 points (4G, 7A) against Victoria.
  • Drew Sim is 3-0 against Victoria on the season with a 3.23 goals-against average.
  • Seven different Giants have two-or-more goals scored against Victoria.
  • The Giants have outshot their opponent in 10 of their first 16 games on the season.
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