Oct 10, 2012 / 5:00 am
It's not quite 'once in a blue moon,' but it has been rare to spot a Kelowna Rockets home date on the calendar early in the WHL season.
The Rockets play just their third regular season home game tonight (Wednesday) when the Spokane Chiefs roll into town.
Despite playing five of seven away from home against three of the tougher teams in the Western Conference (Kamloops, Portland, Prince George), the Rockets are a respectable 3-3-1-0 on the season.
The Rockets will continue to get familiar with the 'Iron Lung,' until the end of the month playing a pair of games in Victoria this coming weekend before closing out the month with a four game Alberta road swing through Medicine Hat, Red Deer, Edmonton and Calgary.
In all, 11 of the Rockets first 16 games are away from home
"When we looked at the start of our season we knew it was going to be challenging, not just because of the teams we were playing but the number of games we were playing on the road," says Rockets head coach Ryan Huska.
"So far our guys have done a good job both at home and on the road. I think over the next little while we have to make sure we are taking care of business on home ice and continuing to try and get our splits when we're travelling."
Taking care of business at home includes Wednesday's tilt with a Chiefs team that has lost just once in their first five games.
"They are a team that plays with good discipline, not just in regards to taking penalties but in how they play the game," says Rockets head coach Ryan Huska.
"They work very hard, they keep their game very simple in that they want to put pucks in behind the defence and they want to outwork guys. We'll have our hands full tomorrow night but I think our guys are looking forward to it."
The Rockets come into the game having won three of their last four including a split of weekend games in Prince George.
Although they gave up five goals in a 7-5 win Saturday, Huska says he was pleased with the team's overall defensive game that night.
"I thought we did a much better job, especially through the first two periods - we didn't give up a lot," says Huska.
"Unfortunately they capitalized on some of the chances they got in the second period. If we can continue to develop and play the way we did the second night in Prince George we'll continue to take steps forward."
After a slow start to the season captain Colton Sissons has been red hot over the past week.
Sissons has three goals and seven assists over his last four games.
He is tied with Myles Bell for the team lead in scoring with 11 points, just a single point out of the league lead.
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