Douglas Farrow Okanagan Rockets goaltender Cole Schwebius smothers the puck, with Jack Finley in support, in BCMML action against the Cariboo Cougars Saturday at CNC.

Ok Rockets battle Giants in opening round

Rockets home for best of three series at CNC against Vancouver Northwest Giants

A pair of longtime rivals will square off this weekend in Kelowna in the opening of the B.C. Major Midget League playoffs.

The Okanagan Rockets will take on the Vancouver North West Giants in a best-of-three quarterfinal series beginning Friday night at the Capital News Centre. Face off is 6:30 p.m.

Game 2 goes Saturday at 3 p.m., with a third game, if needed on Sunday at 10 a.m. at CNC.

The Rockets (21-13-3-3) finished fourth during the MML regular season, four points ahead of the fifth-place Giants (20-16-2-2).

The clubs split four meetings during the 2017-18 regular season. Vancouver won 6-4 and 5-1 in Kelowna in October, before the Rockets returned the favour with 5-2 and 4-3 victories in January in North Vancouver.

“The Giants are an older team that are very well-coached,” said Rockets coach Eric Blais. “They will be a very tough opponent.”

The Rockets played well down the stretch, closing out the regular campaign with three of a possible four points against the second-place Cariboo Cougars.

“I really like the way our team played this past weekend,” Blais added. “We have been playing fairly well of late. As long as we execute and stay disciplined it should be exciting hockey to watch.”

Jack Finley had a goal and an assist in a 4-1 win Saturday afternoon at CNC. Cole Schwebius picked up the win in goal.

On Sunday, Cariboo won 6-5 in overtime. Captain Mitchell Gove led the Rockets in the loss with two goals and an assist, while Brendan Boyle and Ben King had two points each.

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