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Cougars win third straight with second period rally over Royals

Jay Wallace photo

The Prince George Cougars won their third consecutive game on Friday, beating the Victoria Royals 5-1 at Save on Foods Memorial Centre.

The Cougars’ three wins have all come against the Royals as they are in the middle of a stretch that sees them play their B.C. Division rival six-straight times.

After a scoreless first period, Prince George went down 1-0 in the first two minutes of the second but punched back with five unanswered goals before the period was out. Ryker Singer, Jonny Hooker, Koehn Ziemmer, Craig Armstrong, and Caden Brown all found the back of the net in the second. Brown and Singer both scored their first career goals in the Western Hockey League (WHL). Hudson Thornton chipped in with a pair of assists.

Tyler Brennan earned his second win as he turned aside 19 of 20 shots that came his way. Brennan has stopped 50 of the last 53 shots he has faced.

Keanu Derungs scored the lone Victoria goal and Tyler Palmer was saddled with the loss after he surrendered three goals on 37 shots. Affiliate netminder Logan Cunningham made a brief relief appearance and stopped three of five shots in six-minutes of work.

Derungs broke the scoreless deadlock with a short-handed goal just 1:12 into period two. However, the Cougars responded emphatically, as they rattled off five goals in just over seven-minutes.

Singer’s breakaway goal eight-minutes into the middle stanza tied the game 1-1 and seemed to spark Prince George. Jonny Hooker then grabbed the Cougars their first lead after he scored on a great three-way passing play between him, Kyren Gronick, and Riley Heidt at the 12-and-a-half-minute mark. Then the floodgates opened.

Ziemmer and Armstrong scored less than a minute apart to pad the Cougars’ lead. Ziemmer made it 3-1 at 14:05 and then 52-seconds later, Armstrong put the Cougars up 4-1. Brown capped off the scoring spree at 15:49 with his first in the WHL which made it 5-1 for the visitors.

Prince George ran into penalty trouble in the first period but rallied to kill-off four Royals’ power-plays in the opening 20-minutes. The Cougars’ penalty-kill went five-for-five, shutting the Royals out on Friday.

NEXT GAME: The Cougars (3-3-0-0) look for their fourth-straight win against the Royals tomorrow, October 23rd, at Save on Foods Memorial Centre; puck drop 7:05 pm. Fans can listen to the game on 94-3 The GOAT or the can watch on WHL Live.


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