Victoria Royals forward Matthew Phillips (foreground) was in the spotlight again Saturday, scoring the shootout winner in a 6-5 Western Hockey League victory over Vancouver at Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre. The Royals and Giants play again today (Oct. 29) in Victoria. Don Descoteau/Victoria News

Royals capture round 1 against Vancouver, round 2 goes Sunday

Victoria captain reaches historic milestones for Western Hockey League club

Matthew Phillips had a history-making night for the Victoria Royals on Saturday at the Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre.

He notched his 200th career Western Hockey League point, on his 100th assist midway through the first period, then bagged the shootout winner – his first ever – in a 6-5 victory over the visiting Vancouver Giants.

Phillips, who later scored his 13th of the season, reached the 200-point and 100-assist milestones the fastest in franchise history (160 games). With points in his 16th straight game (13 goals, 19 assists), he also has the longest consecutive point-scoring streak in club history, which dates back to the Chilliwack Bruins days.

The Royals captain’s heroics wound up a game that almost slipped away from them.

After spotting the Giants a 1-0 lead in the first, Victoria scored five of the next six goals and rode a comfortable lead into the latter half of the final period. But the visitors turned up the heat, peppering goaltender Griffen Outhouse with shots and erasing the lead in a span of 5:11, with Ty Ronning netting the tying goal on the power play at the 19:01 mark.

The Royals outshot Vancouver 8-3 in overtime, setting the stage for Phillips’ winner. The Giants, who sent 46 shots in total at Outhouse, including 20 in the final frame, was unbeatable in three attempts in the shootout.

Ryan Peckford, Eric Florchuk, Jared Legien and Regan Nagy also scored for the Royals.

The teams are back at it again today (3:05 p.m. start) for the rematch at the Save-On Centre.

editor@vicnews.com

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