Royals centre Tyler Lees looks to make a pass while being defended against by Vancouver Giants’ James Malm in pre-season Western Hockey League action last weekend in Langley. The Royals open their regular season Sept. 21 at home against the Prince George Cougars. victoriaroyals.com

Royals solid in WHL pre-season games, now gear for home opener

Prince George Cougars, 3-2 winners Sunday, in Victoria for hockey rematch Sept. 21-22

With pre-season exhibition games now in the rear view mirror, the Victoria Royals set their sights on their home and season opener weekend.

The Western Hockey League team is still in the process of setting their roster, with just over a week to go before their first games, Sept. 21 and 22 against the Prince George Cougars.

The Royals shored up the defence on Monday, acquiring 1999-born Jameson Murray and a 10th-round pick in the 2019 WHL bantam draft from the Everett Silvertips, in exchange for a seventh-round draft pick in 2019. Murray has 70 games under his belt over two seasons split between Calgary and Everett, with a goal and five assists to his credit.

RELATED: WHL’s Royals take next steps in building new roster

RELATED: Royals gear up for final day of training camp

RELATED: WHL veterans reflect on career with Victoria Royals

Another newcomer, 2000-born forward Brandon Cutler, who came over from Red Deer, was in the lineup for the last three of Victoria’s pre-season games, recording three assists. Two of those came in a 3-2 loss to Prince George in Langley last Sunday.

The Royals had crafted a 4-0 pre-season record before the defeat’s mini-tournament They posted wins over Kelowna (6-5 in OT) and Kamloops (4-2) in their opening weekend, then beating Vancouver (5-3) and Everett (7-1) to start last weekend’s mini-tournament in Langley.

1999-born right winger D-Jay Jerome, who didn’t see a lot of playing time in 13 games with Victoria after being acquired from Prince Albert last January, showed he plans on making an impact for the Royals this season. His 10 pre-season points (five goals, five assists) led all Victoria skaters.

Rookie centre Philip Schultz was next in goals with four and he tied Tyler Lees for second in points with five. Royals veteran Dante Hannoun tallied four points in just two games, while rookie defenceman Remy Aquilon, groomed last year with some late season and playoff playing time, notched four assists to lead all blueliners.

Sturdy d-man Mitchell Prowse topped the plus-minus chart with a plus-5 rating, while chalking up two assists.

The Royals continue practice for the next week at Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre. Game times next Friday and Saturday night are 7:05 p.m.

Campers await assignments … Victoria Royals players who can still technically return as overage players are at the tail end of rookie training camps with the various NHL clubs that drafted them. Among the forwards, Matthew Phillips (three assists in a 7-3 rookie game win over Edmonton on Sunday) is in Calgary, Tanner Kaspick is with St. Louis, Lane Zablocki is in Detroit and defenceman Scott Walford, currently on the injured list, remains with Montreal.

The eventual placement of all four has yet to be determined, but if any of their NHL rights holders choose to send them back for another season of junior, it will make things tricky for the Royals management, who already have three overage players on the roster in Griffen Outhouse, Dante Hannoun and defenceman Ralph Jarratt.

Plan your season strategy … Royals full- and half-season ticket holders, along with those purchasing Great Eight Fan Pack tickets, are invited to meet the players at a special ticket pickup night event Thursday (Sept. 13) at Gate 1 of the arena. Complimentary appetizers and non-alcoholic beverages will be available, and fans can pick up their Griffen Outhouse bobblehead gift.

To find out more about season ticket and other packages, visit victoriaroyals.com/tickets.

editor@vicnews.com

Just Posted

Victoria cannabis dispensaries are busy in their first days of legal operation

The Cloud Nine Collective and The Original FARM opened their doors on April 15

Island cycling series boosts youth race schedule

New series creates opportunity for more youth competition

Colwood wins award for Sustainable Infrastructure Replacement Plan

Plan wins Award of Excellence in Government Finance

Autism support dog helps Langford boy hold his head high

Family shares story for Autism Awareness Month

WATCH: Movie star and PACE alum Calum Worthy talks musical theatre and his career

“American Vandal” and “Austin and Ally” actor has been returning to the program for over 20 years

POLL: How often does your family use BC Ferries?

Navigating the lineups for BC Ferries is a way of life for… Continue reading

Crime Stoppers most wanted for Greater Victoria for the week of April 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

$6K raised in one day’s time for family of woman gunned down in Penticton

GoFundMe launched for family of Darlene Knippelberg, to pay for funeral costs and other expenses

Seven tips to travel safely this Easter long weekend

An average of three people are killed, and hundreds more injured, each Easter long weekend in B.C.

Parents say Austrian climber missing in Banff National Park ‘lived his dream’

David Lama, Hansjorg Auer and American climber Jess Roskelley have been missing since Wednesday

Six months after legalization, high prices and supply issues boost illicit pot market

It has been six months since Canada became the first industrialized country to legalize recreational cannabis

Seattle’s 4-20 ‘protestival’ enjoys tolerance, some support – and B.C. could do the same

Seattle’s Hempfest a large-scale occasions with vendors, prominent musical acts and thousands of attendees

B.C. mountain biker sent home from hospital twice, despite broken vertebrae

Released in Maple Ridge to go home with three fractured vertebrae

Most Read