KAMLOOPS — The Blazers set a season high for goals scored in an 8-0 win over the Victoria Royals, and moved closer to what less than a week ago looked next to impossible -- a playoff berth.
Brodi Stuart began a five point night with his 20th of the season at 12:51 of the first period. Zane Franklin and Josh Pillar scored 19 seconds apart to ignite a five-goal second period.
HIGHLIGHTS: Blazers explode for eight goals against Victoria
Jermaine Loewen, Connor Zary and Zane Franklin on the power play with his second of the game gave Kamloops a 6-0 lead after the second.
Five and a half minutes into the third Kyrell Sopotyk tied the team mark for most goals in a game this season --- set first against Seattle last October 26 and then against Prince George November 18.
Ryley Appelt completed the game scoring with his 4th of the season.
Dylan Garand made 22 saves in the Blazers net for his first career shutout. Garand has gone 4-0 since replacing an injured Dylan Ferguson.
"I never played for a month." says Garand. "So I never know when I'm going to play next when Fergie comes back. So I'm just trying to make the most of my opportunities, get better with the games, and just enjoying the experience overall."
POST GAME: Dylan Garand posts his first career WHL shutout
With an overtime win over Tri-Cities Seattle has clinched a playoff, leaving it between Kelowna and Kamloops to decide the final playoff berth in the Western Conference. The Rockets picked up a single point in an overtime loss to Spokane to stay one point ahead of the Blazers for the third place playoff in the B.C. Division. Both have two games remaining. The Blazers home and away against Prince George, while the Rockets face Vancouver twice.
"We've been creating a mind set to be in this position and a way of playing to give us an opportunity to be in this position." says head coach Serge Lajoie. "I thought we dipped our toe in the water a little bit tonight, but for the most part we did a lot of good things. The young guys when they're able to contribute this late in the season it speaks to their development and sheds a very positive light on the futue of Kamloops Blazers hockey."
The three stars in the building were Stuart, Garand and Pillar.
POST GAME: Serge Lajoie talks about offensive output in 8-0 win
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