As Elton John so directly put it, Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting, and it’s also turning out to be pretty decent for the Victoria Royals.
The Western Hockey League club has managed to pound out a solid 9-4 record on the weekend date through the 2012-13 season, the latest victory coming Saturday evening in a 5-2 triumph over the visiting Tri-City Americans at Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre.
Sure, local fans may not have the usual Hockey Night in Canada feast on their menu — courtesy of the NHL lockout — but they’ve certainly had a steady diet of Royals’ wins to dig in to.
Nearly 6,000 of them witnessed it on this Saturday, despite another rough effort on a power play that is sorely missing injured forwards Logan Nelson and Ben Walker and the direction of defenceman Joe Hicketts, who just returned late last night from the World U-17 Challenge in Quebec.
The Royals are now on a 0-for-17 stretch with the man advantage, but it mattered not in this one, despite managing just one shot on a 43-second 5-on-3 advantage early on.
“It was nice to get those two points off them, for sure, with them ahead of us in the standings,” said Royals forward Steven Hodges, who did manage a short-handed goal in the victory.
“It was a little boost for the guys.
“We know we have to work on our power play and it’s something to start capitalizing on when we get those opportunities in important moments.”
Brandon Magee had a pair for the Royals, including an empty-netter, while Brett Cote and Tim Traber also scored.
Connor Rankin, on a two-man advantage, and Brian Williams replied for the Americans who trailed 1-0, but managed to get it back to 2-2 after 40 minutes.
Magee sneaked his first goal by netminder Eric Comrie from behind the goal at 1:19 of the third period, courtesy of a desperate flick out front.
It was a nifty little backhand flip, between his legs, but from a horrendous angle as it went off Comrie’s pad.
“I was honestly just trying to get it to the front of the net. It was the only way I could think of at the time,” said Magee.
“I just threw it through my legs as hard as I could and, luckily, it went in.”
Victoria now heads to Kelowna on Wednesday to start a three-game road trip.
© Copyright 2013