Vancouver Giants are now back in sixth place in the WHL Western Conference playoff standings following their 3-2 victory Sunday afternoon, April 10 in Kelowna against the Rockets.
Adam Hall chose express delivery on his airmail to Ostapchuk! pic.twitter.com/9QMtfcTwa5— Vancouver Giants (@WHLGiants) April 11, 2022
Adam Hall, Zack Ostapchuk and Fabian Lysell each had two points and 15-year-old goaltender Matthew Hutchison made 27 saves to earn his first career WHL victory for the Giants, who snagged their first victory in nine games.
Hutchison called the experience “incredible.”
“I’ve been dreaming about this moment for a while,” he remarked following the game.
The fact it was a crucial win for the team was “was such a good feeling, I can’t even describe it,” Hutchison enthused.
After a scoreless first, Hall opened the scoring the Giants off the rush from a shot from the right-wing circle. Ostapchuk and Evan Toth helped set up Hall’s 17th of the season.
Just 50 seconds later, Ostapchuk who skated onto a saucer pass from Adam Hall, skated in close and roofed his 24th. Fabian Lysell had the second assist.
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Kelowna responded at 14:58 off a two-on-one rush, then, 12 seconds later, the Giants made it 3-1 when Evan Toth’s point shot snuck past the shoulder of Jari Kykkanen from the left-wing.
Kelowna came within one goal at 10:18 of the third period, but that’s as close as the Rockets would get, as the Giants kept the door shut from there.
On Saturday April 9, Ottawa Senators prospect Zack Ostapchuk struck three times for the Giants Saturday in an 8-4 defeat at the hands of the Kelowna Rockets at Prospera Place in Kelowna.
RECAP: @Senators prospect Zack Ostapchuk struck three times for the Giants Saturday in an 8-4 defeat at the hands of the Kelowna Rockets. The rematch goes Sunday at 4:00 PM.— Vancouver Giants (@WHLGiants) April 10, 2022
More 📎: https://t.co/0jwOj0Db7Q
📸: Steve Dunsmoor pic.twitter.com/TC2vX5RlSm
At 4:03 of the first, Zack Osstapchuk opened the scoring for the Giants off a low shot from the slot. Ostapchuk’s 21st of the season came off an Adam Hall feed from a Kelowna defensive-zone turnover.
Ostapchuk’s second goal of the night came on a Giants power play in the second. Talyn Boyko made the initial save off an Alex Cotton rebound, but Ostapchuk pounced on the loose puck, and stuffed a backhand shot home. Fabian Lysell had the second assist.
Alex Cotton got his 15th of the season at 6:02 in the third when he parked himself at the left side of the Kelowna goal and one-timed home a Fabian Lysell pass to make it 6-3.
Ostapchuk completed his hat-trick effort for the Giants at 14:22 on a power play, knocking down a pass from in close. Payton Mount and Alex Cotton both assisted.
With two more points in their final three games, the Giants can finish no worse than tied for eighth place.
Next Giants game is Wednesday, April 13, at home against the Seattle Thunderbirds.
Puck drop is 7 p.m. at Langley Events Centre.
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