SPOKANE, Wash. – Victoria’s Ben Walker scored just 11 seconds into the game and the Royals never looked back as they scored four goals in the first period en route to a 6-1 win on Wednesday night at Spokane Arena.
Spokane couldn’t match the Royals for the first 20 minutes as they allowed Victoria to score four times, including two power play goals, on 11 shots. The Chiefs could only send three shots the way of Victoria goaltender Patrik Polivka, who made 20 saves in his third consecutive start. Spokane’s Eric Williams, who also started each of the first three games in the series, stopped 17 of 22 shots in the loss before being replaced by Garret Hughson. Hughson saved one of two shots.
Liam Stewart was able to get the Chiefs on the board just over halfway through the second Period, scoring his second goal of the playoff series to make it 4-1 and put some energy into the Spokane crowd. Victoria’s Logan Nelson would score on the next shift – just 29 seconds after Stewart’s goal – to again take control of the game’s momentum and push the Royals to a 5-1 lead into the 2nd Intermission.
Victoria’s Travis Brown gave the Royals a third power play goal in the final period. Victoria’s power play finished at 50 percent, scoring on three of the six opportunities Spokane’s penalties granted them. The Chiefs were 0-for-2 on the one-man advantage.
Royals’ left wing Austin Carroll earned 1st Star honors after scoring two goals and adding an assist. Victoria’s leading regular season scorer Brandon Magee finished the game with three assists.
Spokane and Victoria face off again on Thursday night at Spokane Arena in a must-win game for the Chiefs. The Game 4 matchup will begin at 7:05 p.m.