BY FRASER RODGERS
Prince George Cougars
The Victoria Royals swept the weekend doubleheader against the Prince George Cougars, after their 2-1 victory Saturday night at the CN Centre.
Captain Josh Maser opened the scoring three-minute into the first period, but the Cougars’ couldn’t build upon their early lead, as their winless streak stretched to five games (0-4-0-1). Taylor Gauthier was tagged with the loss, stopping 16 of 18 shots.
Just like Friday, offence was at a premium on Saturday. The two teams combined for just eight shots in the first period and 20 through two periods.
Friday, it took 45-minutes to break a scoreless deadlock. One night later, it only took three. Maser opened the scoring at 2:58 on a pass from Colina, who barrelled down the right-wing and found Maser streaking down the middle.
It remained 1-0 for the Cougars up until the 12-mintue mark of the second when the Royals’ power-play brought them back level. Kaid Oliver camped out in front of the Prince George net,and with his back to the goal, redirected a shot up and over Gauthier’s pad.
The Royals’ game-winner came on a miscue in the Cougars’ end early in the third. Sean Gulka pounced on the puck after it was turned over by a Prince George defender and Gulka fired a wrist-shot over the goalie’s glove at 3:02.
Prince George tried to fashion a comeback bid together in latter stages of the third period but failed to generate an equalizer in the closing seconds with the net empty for the extra skater.
Game Notes: The Royals have won nine-straight regular season games over the Cougars going back to last season. The Cougars last win over the Royals came on December 2nd, 2018. The Cougars have lost six-straight home games and are 2-8-0-1 at the CN Centre. Cole Moberg picked up an assist on Saturday and now has six points (2-4-6) in the last three games.
Next Up: The Cougars (4-13-0-2) hit the road next weekend for a pair of games against the Kamloops Blazers and Vancouver Giants on Friday and Saturday. Fans can watch the two games at Brown’s Socialhouse, or they can listen on 94.3 The GOAT.
Cougars [1-0] Josh Maser (8). Assists: Ilijah Colina, Cole Moberg 2:58
Royals [1-1] Kaid Oliver (3). Assists: Gary Haden, Matthew Smith 12:19 power-play
Royals [2-1] Sean Gulka (5). 3:02
Royals – 1/3
Three Stars: 1) Sean Gulka 2) Josh Maser 3) Tarun Fizer