Riders roll over Rockets in series opener

The Rockets' playoff series with the Ghostriders is off to a troubling start after the team was pounded 7-1 in Game 1.

The Rockets’ playoff series with the Fernie Ghostriders is off to a troubling start after the team was pounded 7-1 in Game 1 of their best-of-seven series.

Rockets goaltender Magnus Viberg got the start over Mark Becica but it was a short-lived appearance for the Calgary native.

Sam Plaquin beat Viberg less than 90 seconds into the opening period as the Riders wasted little time in imposing their will on the visitors. Joel Burgess and Cole Keebler added scores of their own and the Riders had a 3-0 lead before the game was 13 minutes old.

Viberg was then pulled in favour of Becica, who allowed two more Fernie goals before the Rockets got on the board.

With the club down 5-0, Braeden Allkins scored a power play marker with three seconds remaining in the first to salvage something out of a nightmarish start for Golden.

After a scoreless second, the Riders managed a pair of late power play goals in the third to complete the scoring.

Fernie goaltender Jeff Orser made 22 saves on 23 shots for the win.

Golden will need to regroup immediately to avoid going down 2-0.

With the series shifting to Golden for Game 2, the Rockets will look to use home ice to their advantage. Ty Davidson’s club took three wins against Fernie at home during the regular season, so perhaps some home cooking is what is needed for a bounce back game.

Puck drop is set for 7:30 on Friday night at the Plywood Palace.