The Victoria Royals defeated the Vancouver Giants 5-2 Friday night. (Photo Courtesy of Vancouver Giants/Twitter)

The Victoria Royals defeated the Vancouver Giants 5-2 Friday night. (Photo Courtesy of Vancouver Giants/Twitter)

Victoria Royals defeat Vancouver Giants in Friday night matchup

With a score of 5-2, the Royals earn their first win of 2022

The Victoria Royals earned two points for the first time in 2022 as they felled the Vancouver Giants 5-2 Friday night in Langley.

Royals forwards Tarun Fizer and Tanner Scott both recorded a goal and an assist, while goaltender Tyler Palmer stopped all but two of 21 shots. The victory improves their record to 13-29-4-1 on the season.

Forwards Zach Ostapchuk and Ty Halaburda recorded the only two goals for Vancouver, who had won back-to-back games heading into Friday night. Giants goalie Jesper Vikman made 24 of 28 saves for his team.

Victoria opened the scoring just over five minutes into the first with defenceman Kalem Parker’s second goal of the year. It wouldn’t take long for Vancouver to respond, however, tying the game at 1-1 on a goal by Ty Halaburda just four minutes later.

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Royals forward Reggie Newman took a cross-crease pass from forward Tarun Fizer with only 33 seconds remaining in the frame to give his team a 2-1 lead heading into the second.

The Royals would quickly add to the score sheet, making it 3-1 on goal by Tanner Scott two minutes into the period. The Giants kept up the pressure following the goal, but Victoria goaltender Tyler Palmer made a number of key saves throughout the period to keep his team up by two heading into the third.

A power play gave Victoria an opportunity to add on to start the third, and they would make it 4-1 on a goal by captain Tarun Fizer at 2:24. The Alberta product’s eighth of the season would ultimately be the game-winner.

Giants forward Zach Ostapchuk would capitalize on his team’s own powerplay opportunity by scoring his 11th of the season at 12:40, but that would be as close as Vancouver would get as Victoria’s Riley Gannon added an empty netter at 19:07 to secure the 5-2 victory.

Victoria records their seventh win over Vancouver this season, while the loss brings the Giants’ record to 18-24-2-0. The two teams will meet three more times in the next month, with the next matchup set for Feb. 21.

Sunday (Feb. 20) will see the Giants travel to Kamloops for a game against the division-leading Blazers, while the Royals will head south for a game against the Everett Silvertips, with puck drop set for 6:05 p.m. at Angels of the Wind Arena.

The next Victoria Royals home game will be on Saturday, Feb. 26 at 7:05 p.m. against the Vancouver Giants. The game will have a “Hockey For All” theme presented by Charlsey Macgregor and will highlight diversity and inclusivity.

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