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 Prince George Cougars

Cougars Secure BC Division Crown in Thrilling Shootout Win Over Kelowna

February 25, 2024 - Western Hockey League (WHL)
Prince George Cougars News Release


KELOWNA, BC - The Prince George Cougars clinched their second BC Division Crown in franchise history with a thrilling 6-5 shootout victory over the Kelowna Rockets at Prospera Place on Saturday.

Leading the charge for the Cougars was Zac Funk, who notched his 8th hat-trick of the season, while Ondrej Becher and Josh Ravensbegren showcased stellar performances in the shootout to seal the win. This victory marks the Cougars' first BC Division crown since the 2016-17 season.

The game kicked off with Tij Iginla opening the scoring for the Rockets at 10:46 of the first period, the lone goal in a tight opening frame which saw PG outshoot Kelowna 8-7.

The scoring intensified in the second period as Hudson Thornton notched a power-play goal just 39 seconds in, followed by two quick goals from Zac Funk, who surpassed the Cougars' single-season goal record with his second tally. The Rockets answered back with Tij Igina's second goal of the game at 8:31, but Riley Heidt's goal at 16:41 restored the Cougars' two-goal lead heading into the third period.

In the final frame, Kelowna staged a comeback, equalizing the game at 4:45 thanks to Hiroki Gojisc. With minutes remaining, Zac Funk completed his hat-trick with a power-play goal at 17:09, only for Gojsic to score his second less than a minute later, forcing the game into overtime.

After a nail-biting overtime period featuring breakaway chances for both teams, the game culminated in a shootout. Ondrej Becher's lone goal and Josh Ravensbergen's stellar saves against Kelowna's top shooters secured the Cougars' 40th win of the season and the BC Division championship.

FINAL SCORE:

PG: 6 KEL:5 (SO)

FINAL SHOTS:

PG: 41 KEL: 31

POWER-PLAYS:

PG: 3-5 KEL: 0-3

GOALTENDING:

PG: Josh Ravensbergen - 65:00 - 26/31

KEL: Jari Kykkanen - 65:00 - 36/41

3 STARS:

1.KEL: Tij Iginla (2-2-4)

2.KEL: Hiroki Gojsic (2-1-3)

3.PG: Zac Funk (3-0-3)


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