Andrew Cristall led the Kelowna Rockets to their first win of the young season

Rockets hit win column

Andrew Cristall didn't miss a beat Saturday night.

Cristall, who made his Kelowna Rockets debut after returning from the Washington Capitals training camp the day before, was the difference in a 5-3 victory over the Wenatchee Wild.

He scored the game winner and assisted on two others to lead the Rockets to their first win of the young season.

Cristall made his pro debut for the Capitals in a pre season game Thursday, registering an assist before being sent back to the Rockets.

Tij Iginla and Hiroki Gojsic each had a goal and an assist while Michael Cicek and Jackson Desouza with power play markers also scored for the Rockets.

Iginla opened the scoring, whipping home a cross ice feed from Cristall six minutes into the contest. Then, with the score tied at 1-1 seven minutes into the second, Iginla stole the puck behind the Wenatchee net and spotted Gojsic at the far post for his first career WHL goal.

The Wild, with goals 1:13 apart early in the third grabbed a one-goal lead before the Rockets stormed back with three straight of their own.

Jari Kykkanen, making his first start since returning from the Calgary Flames training camp earlier this week, stopped 26 shots to earn his first win of the season.

The Wild were making their first trip to Prospera Place since relocating from Winnipeg in the off season.

The Rockets hit the road for the first time this season with back-to-back games against the high-flying Prince George Cougars Tuesday and Wednesday.

The Cougars have scored a league-high 29 goals over the first four games.

Blazers shut out 5-0 by Silvertips in first road loss of season

Blazers shut out by Silvertips

The Kamloops Blazers could not get their offence to click Saturday in Everett, Wash., where they were shut out 5-0 by the Silvertips in their first road game of the WHL season.

Kelowna’s Teague Patton, Beau Courtney, Kaden Hammell, Dominik Rymon and Ty Gibson were the goal scorers for Everett.

The ’Tips scored twice in the first, once in the second and twice in the third. Three of their goals were from distance, coming on shots from the point.

Dylan Ernst made 24 saves on 29 Everett shots. Silvertips goalie Ethan Chadwick earned the shutout, perfect on 24 Kamloops shots.

The Blazers were scoreless on three power plays, while the Silvertips scored twice on six chances.

Announced attendance at Angels of the Wind Arena was 4,473.

The loss moves the Blazers to 1-1-1 on the season, while Everett improves to 3-1 with the win.

The Blazers will return home for two games at Sandman Centre next weekend, hosting the Victoria Royals on Friday and the Wenatchee Wild on Sunday. They will then hit the road for three games against U.S. Division opponents.

Blazers beat Giants 5-1 to earn first win of WHL season

Blazers beat up on Giants

The Kamloops Blazers scored two quick ones in the first and two more in the second Friday at Sandman Centre en route to their first win of the season — a 5-1 victory over the Vancouver Giants.

Nathan Behm, Connor Levis, Harrison Brunicke, Emmitt Finnie and Shea Van Olm were the goal scorers for the Blazers. Tyler Thorpe scored the lone goal for Vancouver.

Behm opened the scoring at 16:39 of the first period with his first WHL goal — an unassisted marker on a turnover in front of the Giants net — and Levis made it 2-0 28 seconds later.

Goals from Brunicke and Finnie 58 seconds apart put the Blazers up 4-0 in the second period, and Van Olm made it 5-0 at 3:29 of the third. Thorpe beat Matthew Kieper at 13:03 of the third to get the Giants on the board, but that was all the offence the visitors could muster.

Kieper stopped 22 of 23 Vancouver shots to earn the win in net. Brett Mirwald made 27 saves on 32 Kamloops shots in a losing effort.

Neither team could capitalize on the power play. The Blazers were 0-4 and the Giants were scoreless on six chances.

Announced attendance at Sandman Centre was 4,119.

The Blazers are now 1-0-1 on the season, while the Giants move to 1-1.

The Blazers will hit the road for a game Saturday against the Silvertips in Everett.

Andrew Cristall will make his debut for the Kelowna Saturday

Cristall returns to Rockets

The Kelowna Rockets will have most of their roster intact when they host the Wenatchee Wild Saturday night at Prospera Place after forward Andrew Cristall was returned from the Washington Capitals training camp.

Cristall was the last remaining Rocket still at an NHL camp.

The 18-year forward was selected by the Capitals in the 2nd round of this year's NHL draft.

He made his pro debut Thursday night, picking up an assist during a 4-3 pre season win over the Detroit Red Wings.

Only defenceman Caden Price, sidelined week-to-week with a lower body injury and forward Marcus Pacheco out one to three weeks with a lower body injury, will be unavailable Saturday.

The Rockets will look to hit the win column for the first time against the Wild, who will be making their first trip into Prospera Place since relocating from Winnipeg during the off season.

The Wild will come into the game minus head coach Kevin Constantine who has been suspended indefinitely by the league pending an investigation into alleged violations of WHL regulations and policies.

More WHL articles