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Jake Poole had a career-high five points leading the Kelowna Rockets past Victoria 9-1 Saturday

Rockets crown Royals

Rookie Marcus Pacheco must have wondered if he ever would score in the Western Hockey League.

One of two on the Kelowna Rockets roster, and the only forward, without a WHL goal, Pacheco finally got off the schneid during a 9-1 blowout of the Victoria Royals Saturday at Prospera Place.

Leading 7-1, and enjoying a two-man advantage in the dying moments of the second period, Pacheco found himself out with the power play unit.

With time running out in the period, Pacheco took a backdoor feed but, with half a net to shoot at, sent it wide.

Off the ensuing faceoff, Colton Dach set up Pacheco in the right circle. His wrist shot beat Tyler Palmer with 5.5 seconds left on the clock.

"It was a great play by Dacher and the boys setting m upon that five-on-three. I had a couple of chances before that and couldn't capitalize, but I got it in the end,"said Pacheco.

"Here's a player that's really well liked, extremely hard worker, just comes to work and loves the game," said head coach Kris Mallette.

"He's definitely had some chances. The guys really like him and wanted to score.I wasn't taking him off the ice, and if it wasn't on that shift, he was going to go out again, and again and again."

Pacheco's goal was just the icing on a very dominant performance from the Rockets who raced out to a 5-0 first period lead and, unlike Friday, didn't let the Royals find their way back into it.

"Today we had a good chat as a group about things that make us successful," said Mallette.

"Yesterday we got away from it and tried to over complicate things at time. Today, we got everything from hard work, simple details and the ability to get pucks to the net."

Mallette said the team got everything they deserved Saturday.

Jake Poole continued his hot streak of late. Poole notched his first career five-point night, collecting a goal and four assists, giving him six goals and six assists over his last six games.

Newly acquired Adam Kydd and Pavel Novak each had two goals and an assist, while Dach added a goal and three assists.

Max Graham and Rilen Kovacevic also scored for the Rockets on a night when just four players failed to hit the scoresheet, and only Scott Cousins failed to register a shot on goal.

Talyn Boyko turned away 22 shots to earn his 12th win in a Rockets uniform. The only goal he allowed was on a rebound during a Victoria five-on-three man advantage.

The only down note for Mallette was again a lack of discipline at times. The Rockets, as they did Friday, found themselves shorthanded nine times.

It's something, he says, they'll have to clear up as they head out on a five -game road trip beginning Friday night in Everett.

They'll play in Vancouver a week Saturday, hit Victoria for back-to-back games before concluding the trip back in Vancouver Jan.28.

They don't play at home again until Saturday, Jan.29 when they entertain the same Vancouver Giants.



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