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Royals rock Rockets in island showdown

The Victoria Royals continue to be tough on the Kelowna Rockets.

The Royals claimed their third win over the Rockets and second in a row Friday - a 3-1 win in the first of back-to-back games between the top two teams in the BC Division.

The loss halted the Rockets modest three game winning streak.

Rockets rookie Nick Merkley opened the scoring and the Rockets outshot Victoria 35-27, including 13-3 in the third period, but couldn't solve Royals netminder Patrik Polivka, who stopped 34 of 35 shots to give Victoria the win.

The Royals led 2-1 after the first and it stayed that way until Steven Hodges scored his second of the game for Victoria, the insurance marker in the third period.

The loss is just the Rockets sixth in regulation this year as its record drops to 36-6-0-2 on the season while the Royals improve to 30-15-0-2 and sit in second place in the WHL BC Division.

The Royals are still 12 points in back of the Rockets while having played three more games.

The two teams will be right back at it Saturday night in Victoria before the Rockets finally return home

Kelowna will play three home games next week, Wednesday against Everett and then Friday vs. Medicine Hat and Saturday vs. Lethbridge.

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