The Rockets continue to soar up the Eddie Mountain Division.
Coming off a 5-3 win over the Columbia Valley Rockies in Invermere, the Rockets completed a weekend sweep of their Highway 95 rivals with a dominating 6-2 win at home on Saturday night. The pair of wins puts them seven points clear of third place Kimberley and four back of the Fernie Ghostriders for the top spot, although Fernie has five games in hand.
The line of Ian Desrosier, Cole Mckechney and Tanner Watt, as they have done for much of the season, carried the Rockets offensively across both games.
“I couldn’t ask for two better linemates,” Desrosier said after Saturday’s win.
Altogether, the Rockets’ dominant trio tallied eight goals and nine assists between them over the two games.
After a poor first period for Golden in Friday’s opener, Desrosier scored a pair of goals in the second to put the Rockets ahead, while Watt added one of his own in the dying minutes of the second frame. Defenceman Nic Noseworthy added the insurance (and his second goal of the game) to cap the scoring in the 5-3 win. Goaltender Mark Becica, who gave Magnus Viberg a much deserved rest for both weekend games, made 28 saves on 31 shots in his Rockets debut.
It was more of the same the following night.
After another slow start for the Rockets that saw the Rockies take an early lead, Watt notched a power play goal midway through the first and Daniel Dahlin nudged the Rockets ahead two and a half minutes later.
That set up a lightning quick start to the second when Desrosier streaked into the Rockies’ zone and found Watt on the other end of a sweet feed for a 3-1 Rockets lead just 11 seconds into the frame.
The Rockets were just getting started with scoring highlight-reel goals, as later in the second Mckechney finished off some lovely one-touch passing from Watt and defenceman Alex Astasiewicz, a display that surely left the Rockies defenders feeling dizzy as the Rockets whirled the puck cross-ice at will.
Mckechney added another early in the third and Desrosier completed the scoring with a shorthanded breakaway goal. It’s become a seemingly nightly occurrence for the Rockets sniper.
“I know they have the advantage but (while shorthanded) it just feels like there’s so much open ice out there,” Desrosier said, who has cashed in on numerous shorthanded opportunities this season.
With the dominating weekend performance, Desrosier has moved himself into a tie for fourth place in the KIJHL’s scoring race, two points clear of Mckechney, who is tied for sixth. Watt, who was a late arrival this season, has 29 points in just 20 games.
Becica was another bright spot, making 33 saves on Saturday for his second consecutive win.
Clearly comfortable in the Rockets’ net, the only thing the Los Angeles native said he hasn’t quite adjusted to yet is the weather.
“I’m getting used to it,” he laughed.
Davidson was understandably pleased with the play of the club’s newest acquisition (formerly of the Revelstoke Grizzlies).
“We have two different looks as far as what we can go with in net, and we feel very confident in either one,” he said.
The Rockets will travel to Kimberley for a rare Tuesday night game before hosting the Nelson Leafs and Creston Valley Thunder Cats this weekend.