Pregame show on The Zone @ 91.3fm at 6:40 or online at cjzn.streamon.fm
Victoria finished 2nd in the BC Division and have home ice advantage against 3rd place Prince George.
The Cougars return to the playoffs after a 3 year absence, while the Royals look to build on last years second round exit to the Winterhawks, after a winning the franchise’s first playoff round in a sweep of the Chiefs.
In their 8 head to head meetings this season, Victoria holds a winning record of 5-3, while Prince George has points in 5 of the 8 encounters holding a record of (3-3-1-1).
Victoria won their last visit in Prince George 4-3 in a shoot out March 7th, after falling 4-3 the night earlier.
The Royals have outscored the Cougars 30-20 in their head to head meetings, while putting up 22 more goals overall, and allowing 76 less against.
During their 8 regular season meetings, Victoria was 10/44 on the power play (22.72%), while keeping the Cats to 7/45 (15.55%).
Top Head To Head Scorers:
Brandon Magee 6gp (6g, 4a) 10pts
Austin Carroll 8gp (4g, 6a) 10pts
Greg Chase 7gp (3g, 6a) 9pts
Josh Connolly 7gp (5g, 3a) 8pts
Jari Erricson 8gp (2g, 5a) 7pts
Brad Morrison 8gp (3g, 2a) 5pts
Prince George is the most penalized team in the WHL on average per game, with Victoria ranked 3rd.
Both clubs have 6 wins in their past 10 heading into the post season.
The Royals are 9 over .500 at home (21-12-3-0), while the Cougars are 4 under on the road (15-19-1-1).
Victoria has the 4th most 20-plus goal scorers in the league with 5. Austin Carroll (38), Tyler Soy (28), Alex Forsberg (26), Brandon Magee (23), and Greg Chase (20).
8 Royals players registered at least 55 points during the regular season.
’97 born Jansen Harkins leads the Cougars in scoring with 79 points, tied for 20th in the league. He set a new Cougars record for assists, breaking Quinn Hancock's former record of 58, and is averaging 1.16 points per game, tops on the team. He played for Team Orr at the CHL Top Prospects Game. Harkins is ranked 18th by NHL CSS mid term rankings for the upcoming draft.
Chase Witala leads Prince George in goals with 38, and is 2nd in team scoring with 69 points. Connolly (54), Morrison (50), and Erricson (44) round out their top 5.
Victoria’s 21 year old forward Austin Carroll agreed to a three-year entry level contract with the Calgary Flames on Thursday, which was also his birthday.
Carroll led Victoria in goals (38) and points (77) this season as he set the Royals’ single season record in both categories. He also set the all-time franchise mark for career game winning goals and penalty minutes with 19 and 470 respectively. The 6-3, 214 lb winger was drafted by the Calgary Flames in the 7th round with the 184th overall pick in the 2014 NHL Draft.
Joe Hicketts is 2nd in team scoring with 64 points including a team high 52 assists. Joe Hicketts was named Western Conference 2nd All Star Team. He is the first Royal and third player in franchise history to be named to a WHL All-Star Team.
This season, Hicketts led the Western Conference in scoring for defencemen and finished second in the WHL with 64 points (12g-52a) in 62 games played. Hicketts averaged 1.03 points per game, which was second in the league for D-men. The 5-8, 175 lb blueliner set the Royals’ single season record for most assists with 52 and also recorded the franchise mark for most powerplay assists by a defender in a campaign with 27.
Tyler Soy is 3rd in scoring with 63 points, including the 2nd most goals with 28. Soy is ranked 152nd, by NHL CSS while defenseman Chaz Reddekopp is 199.
Cougars Forward Jared Bethune is rated 101, defenseman Tate Olson is 106, and forward Brad Mossison in ranked 150th.
Entering the 2015 WHL playoffs three Royals are nearing franchise records. Austin Carroll (8) sits two goals away from tying Jamie Crooks (10) for most playoff goals. Travis Brown (2g-5a) is currently three points back of Jordan Fransoo (2g-8a) for most points by a defenceman.
Brandon Magee (4g-10a) begins the playoffs only six points behind Steven Hodges (6g-14a) for most playoff points in franchise history, and four points behind Hodges for most assists.
Royals Head Coach Dave Lowry has been named the bench boss for Team Canada at the 2016 IIHF World Junior Hockey Championships taking place December 26th, 2015 – January 5th, 2016 in Helsinki, Finland.
Lowry was a member of the gold medal winning team at the 2015 World Junior Championships in Montreal, QUE, and Toronto, ON, where he served as an assistant coach. Lowry was also the head coach for Team WHL in the 2014 SUBWAY Super Series against Team Russia.
Games 4 and 5 go in Prince George next Wednesday and Thursday.
- Marlon Martens
Victoria Royals vs Prince George Cougars: Head To Head Stats
How the 2 teams match up
Prince George Cougars
|Head to Head Record 2014-15 Regular Season||Victoria 5-3-0-0||Prince George 3-3-1-1|
|Head to Head Record 2013-14 Regular Season||Victoria 7-1-0-0||Prince George 1-7-0-0|
|Last 5 Years record between teams||Victoria 28-11-0-1||Prince George 12-22-1-5|
|Victoria vs. Prince George Last 5 Years record at Victoria||Victoria 14-5-0-1||Prince George 6-11-1-2|
|Victoria vs. Prince George Last 5 Years record at Prince George||Victoria 14-6-0-0||Prince George 6-11-0-3|
|Previous Meetings This Season||Victoria 4 @ Prince George 3 (Mar 7 2015) Final SO|
Victoria 3 @ Prince George 4 (Mar 6 2015) Final
Prince George 2 @ Victoria 5 (Jan 10 2015) Final
Prince George 2 @ Victoria 3 (Jan 9 2015) Final OT
Prince George 0 @ Victoria 4 (Dec 28 2014) Final
Prince George 4 @ Victoria 3 (Dec 27 2014) Final
Victoria 6 @ Prince George 2 (Nov 8 2014) Final
Victoria 2 @ Prince George 3 (Nov 7 2014) Final
How the 2 teams match up
|Team Record||31-36-2-3 -- 67 points||39-29-3-1 -- 82 points|
|Division Ranking||3rd B.C.||2nd B.C.|
|Conference Ranking||6th Western||5th Western|
|Past 10 Games||6-3-0-1||6-4-0-0|
|Last Game||5-2 L @ Kamloops (Mar 21 2015) Final||4-3 W @ Everett (Mar 21 2015) Final SO|
|PP (Overall)||(52/327) 15.9||(66/300) 22.0|
|PP (Home)||(28/166) 16.9||(35/142) 24.6|
|PP (Away)||(24/161) 14.9||(31/158) 19.6|
|PK (Overall)||(98/349) 71.9||(59/295) 80.0|
|PK (Home)||(47/167) 71.9||(25/139) 82.0|
|PK (Away)||(51/182) 72.0||(34/156) 78.2|
|Leading Rookie||Bethune (6-14-20)||Nagy (6-7-13)|
|Most PIM||Ruopp - 140||Carroll - 124|
|Leading Scorers||Harkins (20-59-79)||Carroll (38-39-77)|
|Witala (38-31-69)||Hicketts (12-52-64)|
|Connolly (13-41-54)||Soy (28-35-63)|
|Morrison (23-27-50)||Magee (23-38-61)|
|Erricson (22-22-44)||Chase (20-39-59)|
|Last 5 Games||5-2 L @ Kamloops (Mar 21 2015) Final||4-3 W @ Everett (Mar 21 2015) Final SO|
|3-1 W vs Kamloops (Mar 20 2015) Final||4-3 L vs Everett (Mar 20 2015) Final|
|4-2 W vs Kamloops (Mar 18 2015) Final||4-1 L vs Vancouver (Mar 15 2015) Final|
|6-5 W @ Portland (Mar 14 2015) Final SO||3-0 W vs Vancouver (Mar 14 2015) Final|
|7-4 L @ Tri-City (Mar 13 2015) Final||2-0 W @ Vancouver (Mar 13 2015) Final|
|Leading After 1st||17-5-2-1||22-5-0-0|
|Leading After 2nd||23-2-1-1||26-3-0-0|
|Tied After 1st||5-8-0-1||11-9-0-1|
|Tied After 2nd||3-2-1-0||8-5-2-0|
|Trailing After 1st||9-23-0-1||6-15-3-0|
|Trailing After 2nd||5-32-0-2||5-21-1-1|
|Out Shooting Opponents||13-9-0-0||23-9-1-0|
|Out Shot by Opponents||15-26-2-3||14-17-2-1|
|15||Greg Chase (total)||7||3||6||9||14||1|
|16||Alex Forsberg (total)||5||4||4||8||11||0|
|5||X Keegan Kanzig||2||0||1||1||5||1|
|23||X Axel Blomqvist||3||0||0||0||0||0|
|15||X Matthew Campese||1||0||0||0||0||0|
|8||Bryton Sayers (total)||3||0||0||0||0||-4|
|30||X Jayden Sittler||2||0||0||0||0||0|
|8||X Mitch Skapski||4||0||0||0||0||1|
|30||X Jayden Sittler||2||0||2||0||0||89:16||4||2.69||0.882|
Prince George Cougars
|29||Josh Connolly (total)||7||5||3||8||4||5|
|22||X Chance Braid||3||1||1||2||20||1|
|5||Tomas Andrlik (total)||3||1||0||1||0||-1|
|6||X Martin Bobos||2||0||0||0||0||-2|
|4||X Kobe Eagletail||2||0||0||0||0||-1|
|3||X Marc McNulty||2||0||0||0||2||-3|
|33||X Jared Rathjen||1||0||0||0||0||0|
|33||X Jared Rathjen||1||0||0||0||0||26:44||2||4.49||0.875|